Analysing meningitis genes to identify new treatments

April 19, 2013, University of Liverpool
Analysing meningitis genes to identify new treatments

Scientists at the University of Liverpool are working to identify genes involved in the development of bacterial meningitis to support the search for new vaccine candidates.

Meningitis caused by is the most common in the UK and despite antibiotic treatment, morbidity and mortality still remains high, carrying a 30% chance of death.

Targeting bacterial genes

Scientists at Liverpool, supported by Meningitis UK, are using advanced bioinformatics and infection biology tools to identify the bacterial meningitis genes and their products associated with disease so that they can be targeted for new treatments and vaccines.

Combining world leading expertise in the field of genomics, proteomics and infection biology, the team will identify the essential genes involved in the development of meningitis and will relate products to phenotypic function so that they can be targeted for therapeutics or as potential vaccine candidates.
Professor Aras Kadioglu, from the University's Institute of Infection and Global Health, said: "Meningitis is a growing problem in the UK, and although the current protein is very effective, it only protects against 13 out of 90 different pneumococcal types.

Cross protection

"One issue with this is that we are seeing something called serotype replacement, which means that non-vaccine covered types are causing disease.

"It is unlikely that we will have a conjugate vaccine that will protect against all types, so the way forward is to develop novel therapeutics against pneumococcal that play a major role in the development of meningitis and to identify bacterial proteins as new vaccine candidates that will offer cross protection against all meningitis causing types."

Explore further: A new strategy for developing meningitis vaccines

Related Stories

A new strategy for developing meningitis vaccines

May 24, 2012
Bacterial meningitis is an infection of the meninges, the protective membrane that covers the spinal cord and brain. Children, elderly patients and immunocompromised patients are at a higher risk for the development of severe ...

EU drug regulator OKs Novartis' meningitis B shot

November 16, 2012
Europe's top drug regulator has recommended approval for the first vaccine against meningitis B, made by Novartis AG.

Bridging the gap: Hope that all Meningitis strains will be vaccinated for

February 27, 2013
Scientists at the University of Southampton have taken a significant and important step in keeping people safe from the most common form of meningitis in the UK.

Recommended for you

A new approach to developing a vaccine against vivax malaria

September 21, 2018
A novel study reports an innovative approach for developing a vaccine against Plasmodium vivax, the most prevalent human malaria parasite outside sub-Saharan Africa. The study led by Hernando A. del Portillo and Carmen Fernandez-Becerra, ...

Pre-clinical success for a universal flu vaccine offers hope for third generation approach

September 21, 2018
Researchers from the University of Oxford's Department of Zoology have demonstrated pre-clinical success for a universal flu vaccine in a new paper published in Nature Communications.

Researchers define possible molecular pathway for neurodegeneration in prion diseases

September 21, 2018
A new study has shed light on the mechanisms underlying the progression of prion diseases and identified a potential target for treatment.

Fighting a deadly parasite: Scientists devise a method to store Cryptosporidium, aiding vaccine research efforts

September 21, 2018
In May, just before one of the hottest summers on record, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a warning about diseases lurking in recreational water facilities like swimming pools and water playgrounds. ...

Scientists make significant discovery in the fight against drug-resistant tuberculosis

September 20, 2018
A team of scientists have identified a naturally occurring antibiotic that may help in the fight against drug-resistant Tuberculosis.

Anti-cancer drugs may hold key to overcoming antimalarial drug resistance

September 20, 2018
Scientists have found a way to boost the efficacy of the world's most powerful antimalarial drug with the help of chemotherapy medicines, according to new research published in the journal Nature Communications.

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.