Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

How common immune booster works: Research may lead to new and improved vaccines

Date:
March 16, 2011
Source:
University of Calgary
Summary:
Alum is an adjuvant (immune booster) used in many common vaccines, and researchers have now discovered how it works.

Alum is an adjuvant (immune booster) used in many common vaccines, and Canadian researchers have now discovered how it works. The research by scientists from the University of Calgary's Faculty of Medicine is published in the March 13 online edition of Nature Medicine. The new findings will help the medical community produce more effective vaccines and may open the doors for creating new vaccines for diseases such as HIV or tuberculosis.

"Understanding alum properties will help other vaccines because we are one step deeper into the mechanistic insight of adjuvants, which are essential for human vaccines to work," says Yan Shi, PhD, from the Faculty of Medicine and a member of the Snyder Institute of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation.

Alum is a common grocery store staple used in pickling. It is very effective in inducing antibody responses and is the only human vaccine adjuvant approved for large-scale immunization. It has been in use for 90 years and appears in almost all vaccines we receive as without an adjuvant vaccines in general do not work.

"Knowledge provided in this study may help us manipulate alum with additional adjuvant components to direct an attack against major diseases which require a killer T cell response such as HIV, Tuberculosis, and malaria," says Tracy Flach from the Faculty of Medicine and the study's first author.

The research reveals that alum interacts with a group of immune cells called dendritic cells via their cell membrane lipids. Dendritic cells, the sentinel of our immune system, heed the call of alum and move on to activate a group of T cells that control antibody production.

The breakthrough came as the team made use of a cutting edge technology developed in the Faculty of Medicine called single cell force spectroscopy. This technique allowed the UCalgary team to study individual cells and measure their responses to alum.

The research was supported by the National Institutes of Health, Canada Research Chair program and Alberta Innovates-Health Solutions


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Tracy L Flach, Gilbert Ng, Aswin Hari, Melanie D Desrosiers, Ping Zhang, Sandra M Ward, Mark E Seamone, Akosua Vilaysane, Ashley D Mucsi, Yin Fong, Elmar Prenner, Chang Chun Ling, Jurg Tschopp, Daniel A Muruve, Matthias W Amrein, Yan Shi. Alum interaction with dendritic cell membrane lipids is essential for its adjuvanticity. Nature Medicine, 2011; DOI: 10.1038/nm.2306

Cite This Page:

University of Calgary. "How common immune booster works: Research may lead to new and improved vaccines." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 March 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110314100829.htm>.
University of Calgary. (2011, March 16). How common immune booster works: Research may lead to new and improved vaccines. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110314100829.htm
University of Calgary. "How common immune booster works: Research may lead to new and improved vaccines." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110314100829.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
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