Ground breaking Zika research performed in suburb

LEMONT, Ill. -- Ground breaking research relating to the Zika virus is happening right here in the Chicago area.

Researchers from the University of Michigan and Purdue came the Argonne National Laboratory in Lemont to uncover the molecular makeup of an instrumental protein found in the Zika virus.

Knowing the makeup of that protein, puts researchers one step closer to a cure for zika.

The lab is home to an extremely high resolution microscope that allows for the examination of the tiniest of particles.

That tool is called Advanced Photon Source, or APS for short, and it’s about the size of the Willis Tower.

The team  walked away with a 3D molecular structure of the NS1 protein found in the Zika virus.

The NS1 protein is also found in the West Nile Virus and Dengue Virus—but the makeup is different.

The research was done in April, but for the first time, the results are being shared with the world.

It puts science one step closer to finding a cure for a world health crisis that’s most impacting pregnant women and creating birth defects in newborn babies.