Therapeutic Target to Attenuate Virus-Mediated Arthritis and Improve Immunity

Technology #ua15-166

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Jennifer Uhrlaub
Research Associate, Immunobiology
Janko NikolicH-Zugich
Department Head, Immunobiology
Managed By
Rakhi Gibbons
Asst. Director, Life Sciences (520) 626-6695

Title: Therapeutic treatment of alphavirus infection


Invention: The invention includes methods and pharmaceutics used to treat alphavirus infections by inhibiting specific cytokine production. These cytokines impair the immune response to the infection and causes inflammation, so its inhibition hastens recovery and diminishes symptom severity.


Background: Varying immune response to alphaviral infections (specifically Chikungunya virus) is based on specific cytokine production, including the target cytokine of this treatment method. The inventors identified these cytokines and their effect on immune response. The inventors also demonstrated cytokine-inhibiting treatments as a method improving immune response and diminishing joint swelling in adult and old mice.



•       Commercial; Medical/pharmaceutical. The invention includes methods for treating alphavirus infection and can be used commercially like any other therapeutic treatment.

•       Research; Medical. As a new method of treating alphavirus infections, this invention could have an impact on larger infectious disease research.


•       Current treatments of alphavirus infection rely on supportive care during host immune response. There is no widely successful vaccine or established pharmaceutic treatment for the virus outside of treating viral symptoms.

•       This cytokine inhibition treatment improves antibody response and treats joint swelling symptoms associated with the virus. Current treatments only treat viral symptoms during slowed immune response.


Inventor(s): Dr. Janko Nikolich-Zugich, Jennifer Uhrlaub


Licensing Manager: 

Rakhi Gibbons



Technology ID: UA15-166