Methods to Reduce Mesh Spacing of the Protective Mucus Barrier

Description (Set) Human mucus forms a protective barrier to toxins and infectious pathogens on all the most susceptible surfaces of the body such as the lung airways, gastrointestinal tract, nose, eye, and female reproductive tract. Mucus possesses a mesh-like structure which evolved viruses can bypass. The viruses are sufficiently small as to diffuse through the protective mucus barrier at rates similar to that of water, thus eluding the protective barrier actions of mucus. Johns Hopkins scientists have discovered a method to alter the mucus architecture and reversibly reduce the mucus mesh (pore) size. This reduction in pore size may effectively reduce the permeability of certain pathogens through mucus. This may help prevent certain pathogens from reaching the underlying epithelia and prevent infection. Proposed Use (Set) This invention can be used in all forms of prevention and treatment of certain pathogens or pathogen-related diseases at mucosal surfaces. It may be especially useful for the following mucosal sites: female reproductive tract, lungs, gastrointestinal tract, nose, and bladder. Additionally, the prevention or mitigation of infection by influenza virus (common cold), and pathogens that cause sexually-transmitted diseases may be a key technology that results from this invention.

Inventor(s): Lai, Samuel ,Cone, Richard,Hanes, Justin,Wang, Ying-Ying

Type of Offer: Licensing

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