ScienceDaily: ‘Virus Sponge’ Could Improve Flu Treatments, Diabetes Care, Vaccine Development
Researchers at the University of Maryland’s A. James Clark School of Engineering have created a “virus sponge” that could filter a patient’s blood in a process similar to kidney dialysis, removing the virus from the patient’s body. The concept could also be used to make vaccine production more efficient and in a pill to reduce glucose levels in diabetics, among other applications.
The virus sponge is based on a technology called molecular imprinting. In molecular imprinting, researchers stamp a molecule’s shape into a substance (in this case, a hydrogel—a sponge-like material). When the specific molecule filters through the hydrogel, it fits in the imprint hole and is trapped.