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Australia Aussie experts 'unlocking' COVID-19 cure

02:26  31 march  2020
02:26  31 march  2020 Source:   msn.com

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Australian scientists are using a massive X-ray machine to map the molecular structure of COVID-19 to help find a vaccine for the virus.

Experts at the Australian Synchrotron in Melbourne - which is about the size of a football field - capture atomic-scale 3D pictures of coronavirus.

The images are being shared with researchers across the world, who hope to use the information to develop drugs that bind to the virus and stop it growing.

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"You need to know what the protein looks like so you can design a drug to attach to it," Australian Synchrotron director Andrew Peele said in a statement on Tuesday.

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"It's like designing a key for a lock, you need to know the dimensions of the keyhole."

The synchrotron is the largest particle accelerator in the Southern Hemisphere and produces light a million times brighter than the sun to capture clear 3D images of atoms and molecules.

"Using our technology, within five minutes you can understand why a drug does or doesn't work in attaching to a COVID-19 protein," Professor Peele said.

Dozens of samples have arrived at the synchrotron from across the country and Asia.

Federal Industry, Science and Technology Minister Karen Andrews said the work would support research to find a solution to COVID-19.

Full coverage: Read more on coronavirus from Microsoft News
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More info: Read the latest advice on COVID-19 from the Australian Government

More than 600 COVID-19 deaths in New York overnight .
The New Republic’s Alex Shephard says living in New York “you notice the number of sirens that are almost nonstop” as the state records 635 COVID-19 deaths overnight. “We may not have hit the peak yet,” Mr Shephard told Sky News.“This is still a crisis situation, sort of a 9/11 in slow motion”.New York, the worst affected city in the United States, has COVID-19 deaths total 3,556.

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