I wonder if it is possible to design some Ribonuclease to destroy only specific RNAs (like those of viruses). Then, if virus tries to infect, his RNA will be cut.

Or, instead of creating Ribonuclease, we can design suitable mRNA and let the cell do the rest.

Is this possible?

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The human body basically does this on its own. We express various RNAses, some of which appear to have specific antiviral or bactericidal roles.

(This appears to be due to both RNAse activity and to biochemical properties of the proteins independent of RNA digestion)

  • $\begingroup$ How about creating some drug based on this technique? Could this help fight the infection? $\endgroup$ – Dzery Oct 29 '20 at 18:55
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    $\begingroup$ @Dzery I would say rather that it does help fight infections, as part of normal human biology. And sure, you could package these RNAses up into pills or in an aerosol spray or something. I don't know of any specific examples though. $\endgroup$ – Maximilian Press Oct 29 '20 at 18:57
  • $\begingroup$ that's the point - maybe it's a way to create a new type of drug? $\endgroup$ – Dzery Oct 29 '20 at 19:02

CRISPR/cas is used for exactly this purpose in bacteria. The CRISPR array contains sequences from bacteriophages, which will prime various cas-nucleases to cleave either the DNA or the RNA of the virus.


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