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Drop in Gene Replikin Counts of Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS CoV) Suggests Decrease in Risk of Pandemic, but Counts Rise Again

Bioradar UK Ltd. Cautions Against Relaxing Public Health Measures Given Four-Month Lag in Available Data, Lessons from SARS

LILLE, France, Oct. 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Bioradar UK Ltd. announced today at the Vaccine Congress Europe in Lille that quantitative real-time Replikins Analysis of the virus genome of lethal Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS CoV) shows that the percent of the virus' genomic Replikins Counts greater than 4.0 per 100 amino acids has dropped from its peak of 27.7% in September 2012 to 14.3% in February 2013.

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Replikins are specific virus gene structures related to rapid replication, which have been counted and visualized by 3-dimensional X-ray diffraction. This analysis of virulence and infectivity (1-7) was performed on specimens collected up to June 2013 whose sequences have been reported in PubMed (see Figure).

While the risk of a Mers CoV pandemic may now have decreased, Bioradar chairman Dr. Samuel Bogoch, MD, PhD advises that public health measures against Mers CoV not be relaxed for the time being given a four-month lag in available gene data and the recurring rise in Replikin Counts greater than 4.0 to 20%. "Despite the fact that the related SARS outbreak of 2003 demonstrated a similarly rapid rise and fall in Replikin Counts and ended its brief clinical course globally within a year of its appearance, there were a total of approximately 8000 cases with 10% mortality," noted Dr. Bogoch.

Replikins genomic tracking and public health surveillance should therefore be continued with sequence determinations on all confirmed and suspected cases. Effective synthetic Replikin vaccines can be produced in days as they were for H5N1 (6) and Taura Syndrome virus (7).

The Figure summarizes all of the data listed in PubMed. Detailed data are being submitted for publication. No data were available for large intervals of up to four months. Further, many sequences were published only up to four months after specimen collection.

The rapid quantitative decline here found in Mers CoV gene Replikins resembles that previously found by Replikins Bioradar in the 2002-2003 outbreak of SARS, a coronavirus related to Mers CoV (see Figure). After an abrupt rise in gene Replikin Count in 2002, SARS Replikins began their immediate decline in concentration as the clinical outbreak occurred and quickly terminated in 2003 (1). In another example, this one in real-time gene tracking, the occurrence of the H1N1 pandemic of 2009 was predicted and published one year in advance, its termination in 2009 (see Figure)(1) and its recurrence in 2010, all were predicted by the Replikin Count alone (1-5).

Because genomic Replikin changes can occur rapidly (5), and these correlate very closely with clinical outcomes, it is important that genomic sequences be published as soon as possible after the specimens are collected. Ideal surveillance, attainable now, would have sequences published within a few days of specimen collection and Replikin analysis performed within an additional 24 hours.

Real-time quantitative Replikins gene analysis is changing the surveillance of and action against emerging virus diseases offering time for the real possibility of pandemic prevention, the goal of Bioradar.

Bioradar is offering to work with departments of public health to initiate such surveillance systems for emerging pathogens. In addition, for those interested in testing completely synthetic Replikins vaccines based on this technology can be available quickly (days to weeks).

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1. Report #42 , Replikins Press<>. UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) discussion of Replikins, DVM Newsmagazine, Sept. 8, 2011.
2. Bogoch, S. and Bogoch, E.S. Genome Replikin CountTM Predicts Increased Infectivity/Lethality of Viruses. Nature Precedings npre2012.7144. 04April 2012.
3. Bogoch, S. and Bogoch, E.S. Prediction of specific virus outbreaks made from the increased concentration of a new class of virus genomic peptides, replikins. Nature Precedings doi:10.1038/npre.2011.6279.1.23Aug 2011.
4. Bogoch,S. and Bogoch, ES. Bogoch Replikins Pandemic Prevention: Increase of Strain-Specific Influenza Genomic Replikin Counts, Having Predicted Outbreaks and their Location Seven Times Consecutively, Up to Two Years in Advance, Provides Time for Prevention of Pandemics. Nature Precedings.doi:10.1038/npre.2012.6952.1 01 March, 2012
5. Bogoch, S. and Bogoch, E.S. Marked Rise in Replikin Counts in H5N1 Influenza Virus Localized to Lethality Gene p B1.Nature Precedings doi:10.1038/npre.2011.6420.1
6. Jackwood, MW et al. Efficacy of a Replikin Peptide Vaccine against Low Pathogenicity Avian Influenza H5 Virus. Avian Diseases 53(4): 613-617, 2009
7. Report # 17. Replikins Press<>.Replikins Oral Vaccine Synthesized in 7 days protects 91% of Shrimp Against Lethal Virus . March 11, 2008.