In their quest to mass-produce an effective malaria vaccine, scientists might one day replace expensive manufacturing facilities with a goat. In a study reported December 18 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences online, researchers developed mice that could secrete an experimental malaria vaccine into their milk. When the purified candidate vaccine was injected into monkeys, it protected four out of five animals from a lethal dose of the malaria parasite. If the process can be scaled up to larger animals such as goats -- and early experiments indicate it can -- livestock might prove to be inexpensive, high-yield malaria vaccine factories. “A vaccine must not only be effective, it must be cheap to manufacture if it is to be used in those countries hit hardest by malaria,” says lead author Anthony Stowers, Ph.D., a malaria researcher at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). “Using transgenic animals to achieve both ends is an exciting possibility. If it works, a herd of several goats could conceivably produce enough vaccine for all of Africa.”
The above story is based on materials provided by NIH/National Institute Of Allergy And Infectious Diseases. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.
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