DNA vaccine and duck eggs protect against hantavirus disease
Army scientists and industry collaborators have successfully protected laboratory animals from lethal hantavirus disease using a novel approach that combines DNA vaccines and duck eggs. The work appears in a recent edition of the online scientific journal PLoS ONE, published by the Public Library of Science.
According to first author Jay W. Hooper of the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID), this is the first time that the DNA vaccine/duck egg system has been shown to produce an antiviral product capable of protecting against hantavirus disease.
Hantavirus causes a condition known as hantavirus pulmonary syndrome (HPS), which has a case fatality rate of 35-40 percent. Currently there are no vaccines, prophylactics, or therapeutics to prevent or treat this highly pathogenic disease.
In this study, the research team used a hamster model of Andes virus, which is the predominant cause of HPS in South America and the only hantavirus known to be transmitted person-to-person. Infection of Syrian hamsters with Andes virus, as demonstrated in earlier studies at USAMRIID, results in a disease that closely mimics human HPS in incubation time, symptoms of respiratory distress, and disease pathology. This makes it an ideal system for evaluating the feasibility of postexposure protection strategies.
Collaborating with Aldevron of Fargo, N.D. and the Universidad del Desarrollo in Santiago, Chile, Hooper and his team first evaluated a natural product, human polyclonal antibody, which was obtained as fresh frozen plasma (FFP) from a patient who survived HPS. Their results indicate that FFP shows promise as a post-exposure preventive treatment for HPS.
The team then vaccinated ducks with a DNA vaccine against Andes virus. This vaccine, initially developed and tested at USAMRIID, uses genetic material, or DNA, that encodes a specific hantavirus gene to elicit an immune response in the recipient.
Next, they purified an antibody called IgY from the yolks of the duck eggs. This purified IgY, as well as a similar version produced in duck eggs, was capable of neutralizing Andes virus when tested in cell culture. More importantly, it also protected Syrian hamsters from lethal HPSeven when administered as a single injection several days after the hamsters had been exposed to a lethal dose of virus.
The work demonstrates the feasibility of using DNA vaccine technology, coupled with the duck/egg system, to manufacture a product that could supplement or replace FFP. Furthermore, the new approach can be scaled as needed and eliminates the necessity of using blood products from HPS survivors, which may be in limited supply.
According to Hooper, another advantage of this technique is that duck IgY naturally loses a part of the antibody that has been associated with "serum sickness" when animal antibodies have been used in humans, making the product potentially less reactogenic.
"This antiviral product, if fully developed and manufactured, has the potential to be used in future outbreak situations," Hooper said. "It also could be used to treat health care workers and others who have close contact with HPS patients."
In addition, the authors suggest, the flexibility of the DNA vaccine/duck egg system could be applied to the production of antibodies against other infectious agents and toxins.
More information: Brocato R, Josleyn M, Ballantyne J, Vial P, Hooper JW (2012). DNA Vaccine-Generated Duck Polyclonal Antibodies as a Postexposure Prophylactic to Prevent Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS). PLoS One 7(4): e35996. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0035996
Journal reference: PLoS ONE
- Post-exposure antibody treatment protects primates from Ebola, Marburg viruses Mar 13, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Can hantavirus infection spread among humans? Jan 18, 2008 | not rated yet | 0
- Smallpox vaccine alternative identified Jan 07, 2008 | not rated yet | 0
- Anthrax capsule vaccine protects monkeys from lethal infection Jan 12, 2012 | not rated yet | 0
- Hantavirus found in African wood mouse Apr 18, 2006 | not rated yet | 0
- Motion perception revisited: High Phi effect challenges established motion perception assumptions Apr 23, 2013 | 3 / 5 (2) | 2
- Anything you can do I can do better: Neuromolecular foundations of the superiority illusion (Update) Apr 02, 2013 | 4.5 / 5 (11) | 5
- The visual system as economist: Neural resource allocation in visual adaptation Mar 30, 2013 | 5 / 5 (2) | 9
- Separate lives: Neuronal and organismal lifespans decoupled Mar 27, 2013 | 4.9 / 5 (8) | 0
- Sizing things up: The evolutionary neurobiology of scale invariance Feb 28, 2013 | 4.8 / 5 (10) | 14
Classical and Quantum Mechanics via Lie algebras
Apr 15, 2011 I'd like to open a discussion thread for version 2 of the draft of my book ''Classical and Quantum Mechanics via Lie algebras'', available online at http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/0810.1019 , and for the...
- More from Physics Forums - Independent Research
More news stories
A paper recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine and co-written by physicians and scientists at the University of Colorado School of Medicine finds that an important genetic risk factor for pulmonary fibros ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 9 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
Using the Department of Defense Serum Repository (DoDSR), University of Cincinnati (UC) researchers have identified a number of biomarkers for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which could help with earlier diagnosis and ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 9 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0
(HealthDay)—Three-quarters of public schools in the metro Atlanta area contain microbes, including bacteria indicating the presence of fecal matter, according to research published in the May 17 issue of ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 10 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
(HealthDay)—Factors such as increased case finding may explain why Michigan had half of the total spinal infections associated with contaminated methylprednisolone acetate in the recent fungal meningitis ...
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 10 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
The world is unprepared for a massive virus outbreak, the deputy chief of the World Health Organization warned Tuesday, amid fears that H7N9 bird flu striking China could morph into a form that spreads easily among people.
Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes 11 hours ago | not rated yet | 0
(Medical Xpress)—Native peoples in regions where cameras are uncommon sometimes react with caution when their picture is taken. The fear that something must have been stolen from them to create the photo ...
15 hours ago | 4.2 / 5 (5) | 0 |
(Medical Xpress)—Despite spending billions of dollars on research and development, drug companies have been unable to come up with effective treatments for dementia and Alzheimer's Disease (AD). Now, A. ...
13 hours ago | 4.9 / 5 (11) | 0 |
Australian scientists have charted the path of insulin action in cells in precise detail like never before. This provides a comprehensive blueprint for understanding what goes wrong in diabetes.
15 hours ago | 4.6 / 5 (7) | 0 |
An experimental sleeping pill from US drug company Merck is effective at helping people fall and stay asleep, according to reviewers at the US Food and Drug Administration, which could soon approve the new drug.
9 hours ago | 3.7 / 5 (3) | 0
Activating an enzyme known to play a role in the anti-aging benefits of calorie restriction delays the loss of brain cells and preserves cognitive function in mice, according to a study published in the May ...
10 hours ago | 5 / 5 (4) | 0 |
A drug commonly used to treat depression and anxiety may improve a stress-related heart condition in people with stable coronary heart disease, according to researchers at Duke Medicine.
11 hours ago | 5 / 5 (1) | 0 |