Colorado at the Spear point of Virus Research
Researchers around the world are investigating various ways to develop a vaccine to help stop the spread of the coronavirus that causes the illness Covid-19. Some scientists at the forefront of the research are in Colorado.
A handful of those researchers gathered at a public forum at the CSU campus in Fort Collins to help explain the potential impacts of the corona virus and the tactics that researchers are taking.
Brian Geiss is an associate professor in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Pathology.
Geiss “ We actually identify key points in the viruses’ replication machinery that they use to make more of themselves and figure out how to break those points. And try to figure out how to make small molecule drugs that we can put into patients eventually that can interfere with those processes and block the ability of the virus to replicate, giving your own immune system a chance to fight off that infection and then giving you long term immunity. We do this primarily by understanding the mechanisms these viruses use to replicate themselves. My philosophy is if you don’t know how a machine works, you can’t figure out how to break it. We figure out how a machine works and we figure out how to put a monkey wrench in to break it.”
Mark Zabel, research associate dean in the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, moderated the forum. He opened by noting the university has a long history of infectious disease research and as a land grant university has a commitment to educating and serving its constituents in Colorado.