Impact of viruses depends on time of infection, suggests new study
Viruses are more dangerous when they infect their victims in the morning, a University of Cambridge study suggests. The findings, published in PNAS, showed viruses were 10 times more successful if the infection started in the morning. And the animal studies found that a disrupted body clock - caused by shift-work or jet lag - was always vulnerable to infection.
The researchers say the findings could lead to new ways of stopping pandemics. Viruses - unlike bacteria or parasites - are completely dependent on hijacking the machinery inside cells in order to replicate. But those cells change dramatically as part of a 24-hour pattern known as the body clock.