In vitro characterization of a nineteenth-century therapy for smallpox.
PLoS One. 2012;7(3):e32610
Authors: Arndt W, Mitnik C, Denzler KL, White S, Waters R, Jacobs BL, Rochon Y, Olson VA, Damon IK, Langland JO
In the nineteenth century, smallpox ravaged through the United
States and Canada. At this time, a botanical preparation, derived from
the carnivorous plant Sarracenia purpurea, was proclaimed as being a
successful therapy for smallpox infections.
The work described
characterizes the antipoxvirus activity associated with this botanical
extract against vaccinia virus, monkeypox virus and variola virus, the
causative agent of smallpox. Our work demonstrates the in vitro
characterization of Sarracenia purpurea as the first effective inhibitor
of poxvirus replication at the level of early viral transcription. With
the renewed threat of poxvirus-related infections, our results indicate
Sarracenia purpurea may act as another defensive measure against