Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New way to boost vaccines

Date:
August 5, 2010
Source:
University of Rochester Medical Center
Summary:
As the medical community searches for better vaccines and ways to deliver them, one scientist believes he has discovered a new approach to boosting the body's response to vaccinations. He found that the same molecules used in drugs that treat diabetes also stimulate B cells in the immune system, pushing them to make antibodies for protection against invading microorganisms.

As the medical community searches for better vaccines and ways to deliver them, a University of Rochester scientist believes he has discovered a new approach to boosting the body's response to vaccinations.

Richard P. Phipps, Ph.D., found that the same molecules used in drugs that treat diabetes also stimulate B cells in the immune system, pushing them to make antibodies for protection against invading microorganisms.

The University of Rochester Medical Center has applied for international patent protection for this discovery.

Phipps believes further research will show that low doses of insulin-sensitizing drugs might be useful as vaccine adjuvants, particularly for people with weakened immune systems who cannot produce a proper antibody response. This would include some infants, the elderly, and patients with chronic health problems that lower immunity.

Currently the only widely approved vaccine adjuvant in the United States is alum. A vaccine adjuvant is a substance added to a vaccine to improve the body's immune response. Various forms of aluminum salts have been used for 70 years. (Adjuvants are added to some vaccines but not all. For example, live viral vaccines given during childhood and seasonal flu vaccines do not contain adjuvants.)

"The search is always on for new adjuvants and safe adjuvants," said Phipps, a Dean's professor of Environmental Medicine and professor of Medicine, Oncology, Ophthalmology, Microbology and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. "We are excited that we've identified a potentially important new and effective adjuvant."

Phipps' discovery grew from years of NIH-funded research investigating a protein called PPAR gamma and its ligands, which are present inside B cells and are involved in inflammation and in regulating the properties of immune cells and cancer cells. The way B cells evolve, or differentiate, is central to the body's immune response.

A closer examination of the role of PPAR gamma in relation to B cell function showed that PPAR levels increase upon B cell activation, according to a study published in 2009 by Phipps' laboratory in the Journal of Immunology.

Thus, researchers theorized that any molecule that binds to and activates PPAR gamma would, in turn, improve B cell secretion of antibodies. Researchers tested both natural and synthetic PPAR gamma ligands and discovered that the synthetic molecules used to create anti-diabetic drugs such as Actos and Avandia stimulated human and mouse B cells to better produce antibodies.

The drawback, Phipps said, is the possibility that too much stimulation would cause the immune system to overreact, triggering autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus. Additional research is needed to better understand this process.

The research was funded in part by U.S. Public Health Service grants. Phipps reported he had no financial conflicts of interest. Co-investigator was Tatiana Margarita Garcia-Bates, Ph.D., a graduate student in the Phipps laboratory. She is currently completing post-doctoral work at the University of Pittsburgh.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Rochester Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. T. M. Garcia-Bates, C. J. Baglole, M. P. Bernard, T. I. Murant, P. J. Simpson-Haidaris, R. P. Phipps. Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor Ligands Enhance Human B Cell Antibody Production and Differentiation. The Journal of Immunology, 2009; 183 (11): 6903 DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.0900324

Cite This Page:

University of Rochester Medical Center. "New way to boost vaccines." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 August 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100804161632.htm>.
University of Rochester Medical Center. (2010, August 5). New way to boost vaccines. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100804161632.htm
University of Rochester Medical Center. "New way to boost vaccines." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100804161632.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) President Barack Obama gave a briefing Thursday announcing 8 million people have signed up under the Affordable Care Act. He blasted continued Republican efforts to repeal the law. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
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