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VirmugenDB: Frequently Asked Questions


1. What's Virmugen?

Live attenuated vaccines are usually generated by mutation of a gene(s) encoding a virulence factor(s). "Virmugen" is coined by us to represent a gene that encodes for a virulent factor of a pathogen and has been proven feasible in animal models to make a live attenuated vaccine by knocking out this gene.

2. How is name "virmugen" generated?

Dr. Oliver He originally coined the name. In Oliver's original thought, the part "vir" in the name means virulence factor, "mu" mean mutation and immunity, and "gen" means gene or element. So the term means that a virulence factor getting mutated in a live microbial pathogen, leading to the attenuation and induction of protective immunity. It was just hard to find a term to represent these many meanings. That's why the "virmugen" new name was coined.

2. Why is the study of virmugens important?

The study of virmugens is important for several reasons, including: (1) Virmugen-specific patterns of all and different groups of virmugens may be identified. The results may help rational live attenuated vaccine development. (2) The fundamental host immune responses to different virmugens can be systematically studied, leading to the better understanding of basic host immune defense mechanism. (3) Support systematic study of fundamental host-vaccine and host-pathogen interactions.