Germ-fighting vaccine system makes great strides in delivery

May 20, 2013

A novel vaccine study from South Dakota State University (SDSU) will headline the groundbreaking research that will be unveiled at the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists' (AAPS) National Biotechnology Conference (NBC). The meeting takes place Monday, May 20 - Wednesday, May 22 at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina.

"The main goal of a is to stimulate the immune system to fight against a pathogen that causes the disease", explained Dr. Hemachand Tummala, assistant professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences at SDSU. "We want to make a delivery system that mimics pathogens in stimulating the immune system but not cause infection."

Tummala and his doctoral student, Sunny Kumar, used inulin acetate taken from a fiber derived from tubers, such as dahlias or chicory. "The fiber is natural, inexpensive and easily accessible", Tummala stated. "Most importantly, it acts as a PAMP [pathogen-associated molecular pattern]. We made pathogen-like nanoparticles with inulin acetate and incorporated pathogen-related antigens inside them." Tummala explained, "Once the sense these particles as pathogens, they eat them and process them as PAMPs." This then aggravates the immune system.

The researchers then tested the technology in preventing a . Tummala collaborated with Dr. Victor Huber, assistant professor and infectious disease specialist at the Sanford School of Medicine, whose research focuses on influenza.

The researchers then tested the efficiency of the system in mice against a lethal challenge of the 2009 pandemic H1N1 . One group of mice was not immunized, while the others received a vaccine containing one or two antigens. Within eight days, 90 percent of the unvaccinated mice died. Those who received one antigen contracted the flu, and all but one recuperated. None of those who received the vaccine with two antigens acquired the flu.

"The low cost of the technology, estimated at one or two dollars per dose, also makes it suitable for animal vaccines," Tummala explained. He is working with other SDSU researchers to apply the delivery to sheep and swine vaccines.

Dr. Tummala and his team will also receive the 2013 American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists Innovation in Biotechnology Award for their research on Tuesday, May 21.

Explore further: Man's best friend: Common canine virus may lead to new vaccines for deadly human diseases

Related Stories

Way to make one-way flu vaccine discovered

December 18, 2012

A new process to make a one-time, universal influenza vaccine has been discovered by a researcher at Georgia State University's Center for Inflammation, Immunity and Infection and his partners.

Recommended for you

We've all got a blind spot, but it can be shrunk

August 31, 2015

You've probably never noticed, but the human eye includes an unavoidable blind spot. That's because the optic nerve that sends visual signals to the brain must pass through the retina, which creates a hole in that light-sensitive ...

Biologists identify mechanisms of embryonic wound repair

August 31, 2015

It's like something out of a science-fiction movie - time-lapse photography showing how wounds in embryos of fruit flies heal themselves. The images are not only real; they shed light on ways to improve wound recovery in ...

New 'Tissue Velcro' could help repair damaged hearts

August 28, 2015

Engineers at the University of Toronto just made assembling functional heart tissue as easy as fastening your shoes. The team has created a biocompatible scaffold that allows sheets of beating heart cells to snap together ...

Research identifies protein that regulates body clock

August 26, 2015

New research into circadian rhythms by researchers at the University of Toronto Mississauga shows that the GRK2 protein plays a major role in regulating the body's internal clock and points the way to remedies for jet lag ...

Fertilization discovery: Do sperm wield tiny harpoons?

August 26, 2015

Could the sperm harpoon the egg to facilitate fertilization? That's the intriguing possibility raised by the University of Virginia School of Medicine's discovery that a protein within the head of the sperm forms spiky filaments, ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.