Scientists pinpoint mutations responsible for ineffective 2014-2015 flu vaccine

June 25, 2015
Most H3N2 influenza viruses circulatingduring the 2014-2015 influenza seasonwere antigenically mismatched to theH3N2 component of the 2014-2015influenza vaccine. Credit: Chambers et al./Cell Reports 2015

Viruses like influenza have the ability to mutate over time, and given that the flu vaccines administered during the 2014-2015 season were largely ineffective at preventing the spread of the flu, it appears the virus that recently circulated had taken on mutations not accounted for when last year's vaccine was developed.

Now, researchers at The Wistar Institute identified specific mutations that influenza recently acquired to escape the current vaccine design.

Scott Hensley, Ph.D., Assistant Professor at The Wistar Institute, led a study published online by the journal Cell Reports.

Each year, seasonal influenza sickens 3 to 5 million people worldwide and is responsible for up to half a million deaths.

When the is designed each year, it is meant to protect against specific viral strains that are expected to circulate. The vaccine elicits antibodies that respond to those specific strains when a person gets infected with the virus. If the antibodies match the strain, then a person should be protected from the virus in a given year.

However, specific antibodies that are elicited by vaccination can be ineffective when the virus acquires mutations at sites where the antibodies are supposed to bind, which are called antigenic sites. In a phenomenon known as , mutations accumulate in these sites, thus creating new viruses for which previously effective antibodies can no longer fight against. This leads to vaccines that are less able to protect against the virus. According to some estimates, only about one in four people who received last year's seasonal flu vaccine were protected against the virus.

"Our studies show that flu viruses recently acquired mutations in critical regions that are recognized by our immune system," Hensley said. "These new mutations likely contributed to the ineffectiveness of flu vaccines during the 2014-2015 flu season."

Researchers in Hensley's lab identified 10 different viral mutations that circulated from 2014-2015 and differed from the viral strain that was used to create the vaccine. They then examined sera - the clear part of the blood that contains viral antibodies -from humans as well as ferrets and sheep exposed to the current H3N2 . This was done because ferrets and sheep can be infected with and respond similarly to the same influenza strains that affect humans. They found that mutations in a specific region of H3N2 viruses significantly decrease the effectiveness of these antibodies.

Researchers in Hensley's lab began investigating antigenic drift of the 2014-2015 seasonal influenza viruses in December of 2014 while the virus was still circulating. The mutations were studied using reverse engineering and allowed them to modify the ineffective H3N2 vaccine strain so that it matched the H3N2 strain with mutations caused by antigenic drift.

"I have a really talented team of researchers who are very good at quickly dissecting the specificity of flu antibody responses," Hensley said.

"We identified mutations that were common in flu isolates in December of 2014 and we engineered viruses that allowed us to characterize these the following month," said Benjamin Chambers, a graduate student in the Hensley laboratory.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended that the seasonal flu vaccine be appropriately updated for the 2015-2016 flu season to account for this recent case of antigenic drift. The authors note that their data strongly supports the WHO's recommendation to update the flu vaccine for future infections, and they are currently completing studies to determine if antibodies elicited by the new vaccine strain recognize the types of H3N2 strains that might circulate next year.

Explore further: CDC tweaking flu vaccine for better protection

More information: Cell Reports, Chambers et al.: "Identification of Hemagglutinin Residues Responsible for H3N2 Antigenic Drift during the 2014-2015 Influenza Season" dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2015.06.005

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JVK
1 / 5 (2) Jun 25, 2015
Excerpt: "Our studies show that flu viruses recently acquired mutations in critical regions that are recognized by our immune system," Hensley said. "These new mutations likely contributed to the ineffectiveness of flu vaccines during the 2014-2015 flu season."

See also: Amino Acid Changes in Hemagglutinin Contribute to the Replication of Oseltamivir-Resistant H1N1 Influenza Viruses http://jvi.asm.or...121.full

Mutations perturb protein folding, which is why they are not fixed in the organized genomes of any living species. Amino acid substitutions stabilize the organized genomes of species from microbes to man via nutrient-dependent microRNAs that prevent the genomic entropy caused by viral microRNAs. The amino acid substitutions are fixed in the context of the physiology of reproduction in living organisms and in the context of nutrient-dependent replication in viruses.

That fact links viruses to pathology and nutrients to health.
EnricM
1 / 5 (2) Jun 26, 2015
This should be a call of attention to all the people trying to sell us that vaccines are 100% efficient and all of them are absolutely good and if you disagree you are an antivaxer.

I don't even see why normal healthy people would want to get vaccinated against flu, anyway.
Captain Stumpy
3.7 / 5 (3) Jun 27, 2015
Mutations perturb protein folding, which is why they are not fixed in the organized genomes of any living species
@jk
well then your own model is falsified by your comment and cannot be valid.
remember when I asked"Does your model make any changes to the nucleotide sequence of the genome of an organism, virus, or extrachromosomal genetic element? This is a yes or no answer"?

to which you answered
YES!--Thanks for asking
That means your own model, per your own standards and proclamations, cannot be anything other than horse-pucky PSEUDOSCIENCE

besides being invalidated and refuted here:
http://www.socioa...ew/24367

your entire creationist agenda is known to lack ANY science:
http://freethough...s-place/

https://en.wikipe...Arkansas

JVK
1 / 5 (2) Jun 27, 2015
remember when I asked"Does your model make any changes to the nucleotide sequence of the genome of an organism, virus, or extrachromosomal genetic element? This is a yes or no answer"?


When I refused to answer yes or no to the question about RNA-mediated events posed by Andrew Jones to the ISHE's yahoo group, I was banned from further participation -- despite 2001 publication of an award-winning review article with other human ethologists.

Obviously, theorists will continue to try and place facts into the context of their ridiculous theories and support their theories with claims that yes or no answers are all that's required. But, that's what biologically uninformed science idiots have always done to those who have informed themselves. And that's why idiots like Captain Stumpy try to get me banned from participation here instead of reading and commenting on my published works.

http://www.nel.ed...view.htm
JVK
1 / 5 (2) Jun 27, 2015
Panksepp's group won the same award in 2002
http://www.nel.ed...sepp.htm
"Comparative Approaches in Evolutionary Psychology: Molecular Neuroscience Meets the Mind"

Molecular neuroscience is linked to the development of the mind via RNA-mediated amino acid substitutions that differentiate all cell types of all individuals of all genera.

Captain Stumpy
3 / 5 (4) Jun 27, 2015
I was banned from further participation
that is because you could not differentiate between science and pseudoscience and your proclamations are due to Creatoinist dogma, NOT SCIENCE... case in point- the continuation of your post
despite 2001 publication of an award-winning review article with other human ethologists
1- Appeal to authority fallacy
2- just because you published something that might be valid doesn't mean you are an authority on all science... you also have claimed 20+ years experience in diagnostic medicine which is a felony in the USA because you don't have a license...
3- and most important- you could not answer with valid technical and scientific clarity or accuracy, which means YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT

proof of that is your 100% FAIL rate interpreting other science and papers INCLUDING your insistence that you linked de novo creation of proteins to light pressure...
Captain Stumpy
3.7 / 5 (3) Jun 27, 2015
And that's why idiots like Captain Stumpy try to get me banned from participation here instead of reading and commenting on my published works
WRONG AGAIN... i don't mind your participation in actual science... i have never wanted your ban form that, WHEN you actually discus provable science and share evidence supporting your claims that can be validated , etc

it is YOUR PSEUDOSCIENCE and RELIGIOUS DOGMA that i want banned or stopped

this is a science site, not a religious forum
go door to door like the jehovah's witnesses if you want converts to your religion and quit posting pseudoscience here

JVK
1 / 5 (2) Jun 27, 2015
"... you also have claimed 20+ years experience in diagnostic medicine which is a felony in the USA because you don't have a license... "

39 years as a medical laboratory scientist is what I claimed, with membership in the American Society for Clinical Pathology and a license as a clinical laboratory supervisor (State of Nevada) throughout most of my career.

Your claims are always subject to your interpretations, which have always been wrong. Yet, you seem to take pleasure in your ongoing misrepresentations.

My claims are supported by evidence of my published works, and the availability of my credentials for public inspection.
Captain Stumpy
5 / 5 (2) Jun 30, 2015
39 years as a medical laboratory scientist is what I claimed, with membership in the American Society for Clinical Pathology and a license as a clinical laboratory supervisor (State of Nevada) throughout most of my career
@jk
and again, i catch you in a blatant LIE... i hope Nou likes this one too.. he is another jvk!

http://phys.org/n...nes.html

What makes you think I am not (other than the fact you are an idiot)? Of course I have that experience and expertise
you actually claimed to have that experinece above... but lets see where you actually SAID you had the 40 years experience...
http://phys.org/n...ily.html

I am a serious scientist (medical laboratory scientist) with 40 years experience in diagnostic medicine
Why oh why do you continually LIE when it can be so easily verified?

you are NOT impressing anyone with that appeal to authority...

2Bcontinued
Captain Stumpy
3.7 / 5 (3) Jun 30, 2015
cont'd @jk
Your claims are always subject to your interpretations, which have always been wrong. Yet, you seem to take pleasure in your ongoing misrepresentations
you just claimed that my "claims are always subject to your interpretations" but i showed where you outright lied (or are committing a felony), and i also have showed where you have consistently misinterpreted other studies/science with your creationist dogma and lies... but you can't show where ANY of my claims are "ongoing misrepresentations" at all...

but yet i CAN and HAVE shown where YOU constantly are either blatantly LYING or MISINTERPRETING the science (just like Noumenon whining and crying about his philosophy which she believes is somehow more valid than hard science)

YOU said the above... your words... black and white.. just like your claims about your own model causing MUTATIONS... YOUR WORDS... so does that mean you are finally admitting you are a chronic liar?

2BContinued
Captain Stumpy
3.7 / 5 (3) Jun 30, 2015
Cont'd @jk
My claims are supported by evidence of my published works, and the availability of my credentials for public inspection
and your comments are ALSO available for continued inspection, like your claims HERE
http://phys.org/n...ion.html
In the past two years I've learned enough about physics to link the speed of light on contact with water to the de novo creation of amino acids ...
Maybe you can get Noumenon to explain the QM physics behind this to everyone, since he claims to be able to dance rings around everyone else RE: QM etc!!
... because i've not seen where this was possible anywhere else except in YOUR claims! (copied VERBATIM, once again)
Dr's Whittaker and Extavour specifically called your "descriptions" about their work, WRONG, just like EVERYONE else who has replied about your "interpretations" of their work... making your track record of interpreting science a 100% FAILURE...

2BCont'd
Captain Stumpy
3 / 5 (2) Jun 30, 2015
Cont'd @jk
but most importantly, you claim that everyone else is
anonymous fools and idiot minions of the biology teachers who taught them to believe in the pseudoscientific nonsense of evolutionary theory
but you cannot even provide enough data to convince people in your own field that you are talking SCIENCE rather than BS (see: http://rspb.royal...full.pdf )

if that wasn't bad enough, you are saying you are the ONLY authority on a subject, but even your appeal to authority is debunked just like your model -
http://www.socioa...ew/24367

you want attention and you are looking for acolytes to believe in you, mensa boy... that is not science, that is RELIGION

Your credentials per your claims and comments are all proven FALSE... period!

you promote PSEUDOSCIENCE and RELIGION
JVK
1 / 5 (2) Jun 30, 2015
The light-induced de novo creation of amino acids is again linked to cell type differentiation via amino acid substitutions that differentiate all cell types in all individuals of all genera.

See this published work and watch for the biologically uninformed science idiots to proclaims it is a promotion of PSEUDOSCIENCE and RELIGION.

http://www.nature...928.html

Excerpt: The small differences in amino-acid residue around this domain are thought to determine the transport substrate specificity within the SLC17 transporter family. In addition, the amino-acid residues around this domain in AtPHT4;4 are also thought to be important in transport of the reduced form of L-ascorbate.

Excerpt: Previous studies indicated that both ​AtPHT4;1 and ​AtPHT4;4 gene expression are induced by light
Captain Stumpy
3 / 5 (2) Jun 30, 2015
The light-induced de novo creation of amino acids is
@jk
for starters - from what i read, it says
Previous studies indicated that both ​AtPHT4;1 and ​AtPHT4;4 gene expression are induced by light
it then references the following:
http://www.tandfo....10.6666

the above stated
expression of PHT4;1 was circadian and PHT4;4 was induced by light
and it also said
TPT and PHT2;1 are expressed primarily in photosynthetic tissues, and expression is induced by light
plus more
nowhere in those studies does it claim in *any* fashion anything supporting "your" specific claim-
link the speed of light on contact with water to the de novo creation of amino acids
therefore, as i stated and proved above, you are lying

again

nowhere do i ever claim that actual valid science is in any way pseudoscience or religion (like you do)
only your specific "interpretations" here on PO which i've proven time and again
& your sites
JVK
1 / 5 (2) Jun 30, 2015
The light-induced de novo creation of amino acids also is linked to the nutrient-dependent RNA-mediated amino acid substitutions that determine the time that these flowers produce their scent, which links the substitutions to their physiology of reproduction via circadian rhythm.

How petunias know when to smell good http://www.scienc...2224.htm

Excerpt: Their findings connect the production and release of these fragrant chemicals to the innate circadian rhythms that pulse through all life on Earth.

This study does not link the speed of light on contact with water to the de novo creation of amino acids.

Many studies do not do that.

However, no experimental evidence that attests to the biophysically constrained chemistry of protein folding links mutations to the evolution of circadian rhythms. That's how serious scientists recognize theorists and their pseudoscientific nonsense.
Captain Stumpy
5 / 5 (1) Jul 01, 2015
This study does not link the speed of light on contact with water to the de novo creation of amino acids.
Many studies do not do that.
@jk
no Sh*t? really?
i know that! that is what i told YOU, mensa boy... quit stating the obvious and explain and give evidence of your claim
I've learned enough about physics to link the speed of light on contact with water to the de novo creation of amino acids ...
where is the evidence?
you said above
My claims are supported by evidence of my published works, and the availability of my credentials for public inspection
&
Your claims are always subject to your interpretations, which have always been wrong. Yet, you seem to take pleasure in your ongoing misrepresentations
where am i wrong? where is your evidence of your claims?

like i said before: your "interpretations" of current science/biology/medicine are 100% wrong to date, per the authors and experimentalist publishing papers giving feedback

JVK
1 / 5 (2) Jul 02, 2015
See:
pH, water, amino acids and protein folding
http://rna-mediat...folding/

Solubilities of amino acids in water at various pH values under 298.15 K and Translational tuning optimizes nascent protein folding in cells link what is currently known about the biophysically constrained chemistry of nutrient-dependent RNA-mediated protein folding to cell type differentiation in all genera via conserved molecular mechanisms. Mutations are linked from perturbed protein folding to pathology.
Captain Stumpy
5 / 5 (1) Jul 02, 2015
See:
pH, water, amino acids and protein folding
http://rna-mediat...folding/
@jk
PHISHING/SPAMMING SITE WHICH PROMOTES CREATIONIST RELIGION AS SCIENCE

reported
Solubilities of amino acids in water at various pH values under 298.15 K
are you actually trying to say that your link is scientific and experimental evidence that "link the speed of light on contact with water to the de novo creation of amino acids" ????
REALLY?

and you wonder why you are classified as a pseudoscience acolyte?

Mutations are linked from perturbed protein folding to pathology
already debunked by Lenski. Extavour, Whittaker et al

JVK
1 / 5 (2) Jul 02, 2015
Beyond neo-Darwinism—an epigenetic approach to evolution (1979)
http://www.scienc...79901917

See also: The making of a photosynthetic animal (2011) http://jeb.biolog...abstract

already debunked by Lenski. Extavour, Whittaker et al


Does everyone agree with SSgt (raised by wolves) Stumpy that light and water are not required to link the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA via the physiology of reproduction in all genera -- except the species of microbe that supposedly has not evolved in the past ~2 billion years?

See: Scientists discover organism that hasn't evolved in more than 2 billion years
http://phys.org/n...ars.html
Captain Stumpy
5 / 5 (1) Jul 03, 2015
Does everyone agree with SSgt (raised by wolves) Stumpy that light and water are not required to link the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA via the physiology of reproduction in all genera -- except the species of microbe that supposedly has not evolved in the past ~2 billion years?
@jk
1- you do realize that the bulk of the scientists refuse to even acknowledge you because you promote creationist pseudoscience, right?

2- as for posting here: facts are facts
your claims, like this one
I've learned enough about physics to link the speed of light on contact with water to the de novo creation of amino acids ...
are NOT SUPPORTED by your links above, which is the point of my posts
also- your perfume/rna personally owned OPINION sites are NOT science, especially when you specifically post and share pseudoscience/creationist dogma and mix it with the science!

lastly: every scientists we've asked that replied also refuted you
JVK
1 / 5 (1) Jul 03, 2015
1- you do realize that the bulk of the scientists refuse to even acknowledge you because you promote creationist pseudoscience, right?


The majority of scientists receive funding from the evolution industry or big bang cosmology industry. They are typically concerned that their funds will dry up and that their labs will be dismantled if they do not continue to pretend they support neo-Darwinian dogma.

Fortunately, many of my colleagues will probably retire during the next few years, and the next generation will ensure that the paradigm shift is complete.

For example, in his 2015 State of the Union address, the US President touted the need for pharmacogenomics testing because it links metabolic networks to genetic networks in the context of healthy longevity or mutation-driven pathology.

See: http://fortune.co...atments/
JVK
1 / 5 (1) Jul 03, 2015
"Ahead of President Obama's announcement, Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), gave an outline of the initiative during a press conference..."

http://www.bustle...hers-can

The NIH division of Mental Health began to restrict funding for drug development a few years ago, and they devastated the pharmaceutical industry, which is largely based on claims made by the evolution industry. See: http://www.nimh.n...is.shtml

Excerpt: "At the end of the 19th century, it was logical to use a simple diagnostic approach that offered reasonable prognostic validity. At the beginning of the 21st century, we must set our sights higher."3

Collins is an evangelical Christian who wrote "The Language of God" when he thought that DNA could be used as a direct link to biodiversity.

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