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Gain of Function Research

OPINION 8-7-22

The Covid virus has brought so much heartache and destruction around the world.  A lot of discussion in the news about “gain of function research”.  What is that?  In simple terms it’s when microbiologists tweak a virus’ genome to alter its properties, such as making it more transmissible or more lethal.

Wikipedia‘s definition:  “Gain-of-function research (GoF research or GoFR) is medical research that genetically alters an organism in a way that may enhance the biological functions of gene products. This may include an altered pathogenesis, transmissibility, or host range, i.e., the types of hosts that a microorganism can infect. This research is intended to reveal targets to better predict emerging infectious diseases and to develop vaccines and therapeutics. For example, influenza B can only infect humans and harbor seals.

Introducing a mutation that would allow influenza B to infect rabbits in a controlled laboratory situation would be considered a gain-of-function experiment, as the virus did not previously have that function. That type of experiment could then help reveal which parts of the virus are responsible for its host range, enabling the creation of antiviral medicines which block this function.

In virology, gain-of-function research is usually employed with the intention of better understanding current and future pandemics. In vaccine development, gain-of-function research is conducted in the hope of gaining a head start on a virus and being able to develop a vaccine or therapeutic before it emerges. 

The term “gain of function” is sometimes applied more narrowly to refer to “research which could enable a pandemic-potential pathogen to replicate more quickly or cause more harm in humans or other closely-related mammals.”

There are lot of theories and opinions on the web about this topic.  Everyone should do their own research and decide for themselves.

Ivermectin is the Topic

Ivermectin has been in the news quite often but what is it and what is it used for?  Random videos about Ivermectin are displayed at random times.

Important Disclaimer:   Ivermectin is NOT approved by the FDA for the treatment of any viral infection.