Kansas University - Update on COVID-19
May 07, 2021
Professor Tony Fehr
Kansas University - Update on COVID-19

My research involves a coronavirus protein called a “macrodomain”. I do wish to talk for about 1/3 of the time about our efforts to develop novel inhibitors of this protein that could potentially be used therapeutically. I think it would be interesting for your group to see at a basic level all of what happens in early stage drug development (and I mean very early). The other 2/3s will be related to the Stowers talks you reference below, albeit with my own take on the outbreak as it stands now.

#1. Chief Science Officer at Stowers Institute in March reviewed the structure of the virus and the nature of the vaccines in emergency use. We all are well familiar with the spike protein which is a point of attack but our knowledge of the inside of the nucleus may be a bit sketchy.

That’s where variants may be found. https://corporate.americancentury.com/content/corporate/en/insights/articles/news-insights/covid19-today-new-variants-vaccines.html The first 20 minutes is the virus structure, the second the nature of the vaccines in use. Vocabulary is ‘friendly’.

#2. Prof Fehr spoke at a virtual COVID conference sponsored by Columbia University to sophisticated audience. https://research.columbia.edu/covid/symposia-archive/november4-fehr

Therein was mentioned the protein called a ‘macrodomain’, a structure possessed by corona and several other viruses. Even if life sciences are as far from your experience as from mine, one can sense the complexity of the path which the researcher treads. The QnA from other researchers enhances the perspective. Then Tony can give us the Cliff Notes version.