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Hepatitis C mouse model a major milestone

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Development paves the way for testing potential vaccines.

Hepatitis C relies on specific 'host entry factors' to infect cells - making it impossible to study the disease in lab mice until now.
Elie DolginResearchers have produced the first mouse model with a functional immune system that is susceptible to infection by the hepatitis C virus — by getting it to express two human genes.

The advance paves the way for testing potential vaccines and drug targets. With few therapies available — the first targeted ones were approved by the US Food and Drug Administration just last month — the hepatitis C virus (HCV) puts 170 million people around the world at a heightened risk of cirrhosis, liver failure and cancer.

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