Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Vaccine prototype stronger than traditional vaccines

Date:
November 28, 2011
Source:
Brigham and Women's Hospital
Summary:
Researchers have created a vaccine that is more potent than traditional vaccines available today. The glycoconjugate vaccine prototype is 100 times more effective than traditional glycoconjugate vaccines.

Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) researchers have created a vaccine that is more potent than traditional vaccines available today. The glycoconjugate vaccine prototype is 100 times more effective than traditional glycoconjugate vaccines. Their work is published in the December 2011 issue of Nature Medicine.

A glycoconjugate vaccine is composed of covalently bound carbohydrate and protein molecules, and is the standard design for many vaccines used to protect against common diseases such as pneumonia and meningitis.

Researchers designed the vaccine prototype after discovering that immune cells, called T-cells, can recognize a vaccine's carbohydrates, and from that recognition elicit an immune response. This discovery challenges popular assumptions that immune cells only recognize the protein portion of glycoconjugate vaccines.

Proof that T-cells recognize carbohydrates came when researchers immunized mice with different types of glycoconjugate vaccines against the bacteria, group B Streptococcus. One group was immunized with vaccines containing different proteins. Another group was immunized with vaccines with the same proteins. For both groups, the carbohydrate chain in the vaccines was the same.

Researchers saw that mice given the vaccines with different proteins had just as good an immune response as those given vaccines with the same proteins-the variability in proteins did not change immune response. This told researchers that T-cells were recognizing carbohydrates to generate a consistent immune response. They further investigated the mechanisms responsible for how carbohydrate-containing glycoconjugate vaccines activate protective immunity to a bacterial infection.

"One thing that is tremendously novel here is that we were able to find T-cells within a mouse after immunization with a glycoconjugate [vaccine] that just recognized carbohydrates," said Dennis L. Kasper, MD, director of BWH's Channing Laboratory. "So these may be the first true carbohydrate-specific T-cells found."

The understanding that it was not only proteins, but also carbohydrates that were being recognized by cells led researchers to design a vaccine that yielded many carbohydrate particles when processed by the immune system-in turn creating a vaccine that generated a stronger immune response. Researchers believe that the more effective vaccine prototype they designed may one day assist in protecting high-risk populations susceptible of disease.

"For example, pneumococcal conjugate vaccines are good in children, but are not effective in protecting the elderly," explained Kasper. So we are hopeful that by designing vaccines like this, you'll make better vaccines that will be effective in all the at-risk populations."

Fikri Avci, PhD, lead study author and instructor in the Department of Medicine at BWH and Harvard Medical School adds that the findings on how the body's immune cells interact with carbohydrates will also lead to more effective vaccines in the future.

"Carbohydrates are among the most abundant and structurally diverse molecules in nature," said Avci. "They are extremely important in many biological functions. A better understanding of carbohydrate interaction is crucial. We are hoping that our findings will provide a framework for production of new-generation therapeutics and preventive medicines not only against bacterial infections, but also for cancer and viral diseases."

The research was supported by grants from the United States National Institutes of Health.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Brigham and Women's Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Fikri Y Avci, Xiangming Li, Moriya Tsuji, Dennis L Kasper. A mechanism for glycoconjugate vaccine activation of the adaptive immune system and its implications for vaccine design. Nature Medicine, 2011; DOI: 10.1038/nm.2535

Cite This Page:

Brigham and Women's Hospital. "Vaccine prototype stronger than traditional vaccines." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 November 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111128132714.htm>.
Brigham and Women's Hospital. (2011, November 28). Vaccine prototype stronger than traditional vaccines. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111128132714.htm
Brigham and Women's Hospital. "Vaccine prototype stronger than traditional vaccines." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/11/111128132714.htm (accessed July 30, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Generics Eat Into Pfizer's Sales

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 29, 2014) Pfizer, the world's largest drug maker, cut full-year revenue forecasts because generics could cut into sales of its anti-arthritis drug, Celebrex. Fred Katayama reports. 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