Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Cellular Mechanism That Will Significantly Advance Vaccine Development Discovered

Date:
June 18, 2008
Source:
La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology
Summary:
Scientists have discovered a new, previously unknown mechanism in how the body fights a virus. The finding runs counter to traditional scientific understanding of this process and will provide scientists a more effective method for developing vaccines.

La Jolla Institute for Allergy & Immunology (LIAI) scientists have discovered one for the textbooks. Their finding, reported June 13 in the scientific journal Immunity, illuminates a new, previously unknown mechanism in how the body fights a virus. The finding runs counter to traditional scientific understanding of this process and will provide scientists a more effective method for developing vaccines.

"Our research grew from the question, "why do you get good antibody responses to some parts of (virus) pathogens and poor responses to other parts?" said LIAI scientist Shane Crotty, Ph.D., the lead researcher on the paper, "Selective CD4 T cell help for antibody responses to a large viral pathogen: deterministic linkage of specificities." Alessandro Sette, Ph.D., a renowned vaccine expert and director of the LIAI Center for Infectious Disease, also was a key contributor on the study. Dr. Crotty said the team studied the smallpox vaccine, considered the "gold standard" of vaccines, and found some startling answers.

"We expected one thing based on textbook knowledge and that didn't happen at all," he said. It was known previously that getting a good antibody response requires two different cells of the immune system -- B cells and CD4 T cells, both soldiers in the immune system's defensive army. Antibody responses are important because they help the body fight off viruses and they also are key to vaccine development. Surprisingly, however, Dr. Crotty said the researchers found that B cells and CD4 T cells recognize the same piece of the virus.

"Previously, it was thought that the CD4 T cell could react to any part of the virus, but now we realize it must be specific to the same part as the B cell," he explained. "When you have a hundred different parts, this knowledge makes a big difference. It narrows down the search for the right antigens tremendously."

Scientists use knowledge of which antigens (virus pieces) trigger an antibody attack to develop vaccines. Vaccines work by exposing the individual to a milder form of a particular virus, so that the body makes antibodies to fight off the virus. Consequently, if the individual is later exposed to the actual virus, the body already has an army of antibodies built up that can fight off this stronger viral attack before it can overtake the body and cause sickness.

With the knowledge gained from the LIAI study, scientists will now be able to more easily figure out the most important viral pieces to focus on in developing a vaccine. "The fact that it requires two components to fight the (virus) pathogen is important to understand," Dr. Crotty said. "So now when we find out which viral pieces are producing a strong response from the B cells, we can cross check that against the viral pieces eliciting a good response from the CD4 T cells. The point at which these virus pieces cross - in other words where the same piece is eliciting a response from both the B cells and CD4 T cells - then we know we have found our best candidate for creating a vaccine."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology. "New Cellular Mechanism That Will Significantly Advance Vaccine Development Discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080616144856.htm>.
La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology. (2008, June 18). New Cellular Mechanism That Will Significantly Advance Vaccine Development Discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080616144856.htm
La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology. "New Cellular Mechanism That Will Significantly Advance Vaccine Development Discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080616144856.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

AP (Apr. 18, 2014) Dairy farmers and ethnic groups in Vermont are both benefiting from a unique collaborative effort that's feeding a growing need for fresh and affordable goat meat. (April 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Great British Farmland Boom

The Great British Farmland Boom

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 17, 2014) Britain's troubled Co-operative Group is preparing to cash in on nearly 18,000 acres of farmland in one of the biggest UK land sales in decades. As Ivor Bennett reports, the market timing couldn't be better, with farmland prices soaring over 270 percent in the last 10 years. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction

Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) With plenty of honking, flapping, and fluttering, more than three dozen Caribbean flamingos at Zoo Miami were rounded up today as the iconic exhibit was closed for renovations. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Change of Diet Helps Crocodile Business

Change of Diet Helps Crocodile Business

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 16, 2014) Crocodile farming has been a challenge in Zimbabwe in recent years do the economic collapse and the financial crisis. But as Ciara Sutton reports one of Europe's biggest suppliers of skins to the luxury market has come up with an unusual survival strategy - vegetarian food. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins