Newswise — Matthew Frieman, PhD, Associate Professor of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine is available for interviews on the coronavirus outbreak in China that is spreading to other countries including the U.S. He plans to study the virus by synthesizing it in his lab and from samples provided to him from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

His research goal is to create therapeutic interventions for viruses of public health concern by developing a detailed understanding of how the viruses interact with the host.  His research has focused on the recently emerged and highly pathogenic coronaviruses: Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV).  Both viruses cause severe lung disease, are highly lethal and yet there are no FDA approved therapeutics that target them. 

His work has been highlighted in The Washington Post, NPR, and STAT.

Quote: “With new cases in Japan, Thailand, and now the U.S., and with the number of cases in China now totaling in the hundreds, there is clear evidence human-to-human spread of this virus, which will make it problematic to control.”

Some of Dr. Frieman’s published research findings on these viruses and potential new treatments appear below:

Coleman CM, Sisk JM, Mingo RM, Nelson EA, White JM, Frieman MB. 2016. Abelson Kinase Inhibitors Are Potent Inhibitors of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus Fusion. J Virol 90:8924-8933.

Luke T, Wu H, Zhao J, Channappanavar R, Coleman CM, Jiao JA, Matsushita H, Liu Y, Postnikova EN, Ork BL, Glenn G, Flyer D, Defang G, Raviprakash K, Kochel T, Wang J, Nie W, Smith G, Hensley LE, Olinger GG, Kuhn JH, Holbrook MR, Johnson RF, Perlman S, Sullivan E, Frieman MB. 2016. Human polyclonal immunoglobulin from transchromosomic bovines inhibits MERS-CoV in vivo. Sci Transl Med 8:326ra321.  

Dyall J, Coleman CM, Hart BJ, Venkataraman T, Holbrook MR, Kindrachuk J, Johnson RF, Olinger GG, Jr., Jahrling PB, Laidlaw M, Johansen LM, Lear-Rooney CM, Glass PJ, Hensley LE, Frieman MB. 2014. Repurposing of clinically developed drugs for treatment of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus infection. Antimicrob Agents Chemother 58:4885-4893.