Nav: Home

Combating anthrax: Results of study published this month as researchers look for a better vaccine

August 14, 2006

St. Louis -- A new study published this month by a Saint Louis University vaccine researcher scrutinizes what in the future could be an alternative to the presently available anthrax vaccine.

This new type of anthrax vaccine produced the immune response doctors were looking for, according to peer-reviewed research published in Vaccine.

In its first human testing, the vaccine was given to 100 volunteers at four sites around the United States, said Geoffrey Gorse, M.D., a Saint Louis University researcher who was the main author of the paper.

"This type of research, five years after 9/11, continues to be very important to pursue," Gorse said. "We need a better vaccine to help protect people from anthrax infection, whether the vaccine is given before or soon after exposure to anthrax spores."

Gorse said the study was able to answer some important questions about this candidate vaccine.

"We were able to demonstrate in this study that the investigational anthrax vaccine produced an immune response that justifies further testing in larger studies," he said. "We'll be using this data to help design strategies for testing of this vaccine in the future."

Gorse indicated that the investigational vaccine, made by VaxGen Inc., demonstrated a clear relationship between the amount of vaccine administered and the subsequent immune response.

The study was designed to evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of escalating doses of the new vaccine. A total of 100 healthy adults were randomized to receive either one of four different vaccine formulations, or AVA, the anthrax vaccine currently licensed for use in the United States. All vaccinations were administered intramuscularly.
-end-
Gorse, along with colleagues at Baylor College of Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University and VaxGen, conducted the research.

The Phase I study was funded by VaxGen's contract N01-AI-25494 with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

The vaccine is a recombinant Protective Antigen (PA) protein vaccine that was initially developed by the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID). This vaccine cannot cause anthrax infection.

VaxGen, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company engaged in the development, manufacture and commercialization of biologic products for the prevention and treatment of human infectious diseases, including anthrax and smallpox. VaxGen has been awarded an $877.5 million contract by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to provide 75 million doses of a modern anthrax vaccine for civilian biodefense. Based in Brisbane, Calif., VaxGen operates a wholly owned manufacturing facility in California and owns a minority interest in Celltrion, Inc., a company in the Republic of Korea established to provide contract manufacturing to the global pharmaceutical industry. For more information, please visit the company's web site at www.vaxgen.com.

Established in 1836, Saint Louis University School of Medicine has the distinction of awarding the first M.D. degree west of the Mississippi River. Saint Louis University School of Medicine is a pioneer in geriatric medicine, organ transplantation, chronic disease prevention, cardiovascular disease, neurosciences and vaccine research, among others. The School of Medicine trains physicians and biomedical scientists, conducts medical research, and provides health services on a local, national and international level.

Saint Louis University

Related Immune Response Articles:

Discovering the early age immune response in foals
Researchers at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine have discovered a new method to measure tiny amounts of antibodies in foals, a finding described in the May 16 issue of PLOS ONE.
Nixing the cells that nix immune response against cancer
For first time, study characterizes uptick of myeloid-derived suppressor cells in the spleens of human cancer patients, paving the way for therapies directed against these cells that collude with cancer.
Jumbled chromosomes may dampen the immune response to tumors
How well a tumor responds to immunotherapy may depend in part on whether its chromosomes are intact or in a state of disarray, a new study reports.
Tailored organoid may help unravel immune response mystery
Cornell and Weill Cornell Medicine researchers report on the use of biomaterials-based organoids in an attempt to reproduce immune-system events and gain a better understanding of B cells.
Tweaking the immune response might be a key to combat neurodegeneration
Patients with Alzheimer's or other neurodegenerative diseases progressively loose neurons yet cannot build new ones.
Estrogen signaling impacted immune response in cancer
New research from The Wistar Institute showed that estrogen signaling was responsible for immunosuppressive effects in the tumor microenvironment across cancer types.
No platelets, no immune response
When a virus attacks our organism, an inflammation appears on the affected area.
Malaria: A genetically attenuated parasite induces an immune response
With nearly 3.2 billion people currently at risk of contracting malaria, scientists from the Institut Pasteur, the CNRS and Inserm have experimentally developed a live, genetically attenuated vaccine for Plasmodium, the parasite responsible for the disease.
New finding will help target MS immune response
Researchers have made another important step in the progress towards being able to block the development of multiple sclerosis and other autoimmune diseases.
Flu infection reveals many paths to immune response
A new study of influenza infection in an animal model broadens understanding of how the immune system responds to flu virus, showing that the process is more dynamic than usually described, engaging a broader array of biological pathways.

Related Immune Response Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Crisis
There's no greater threat to humanity than climate change. What can we do to stop the worst consequences? This hour, TED speakers explore how we can save our planet and whether we can do it in time. Guests include climate activist Greta Thunberg, chemical engineer Jennifer Wilcox, research scientist Sean Davis, food innovator Bruce Friedrich, and psychologist Per Espen Stoknes.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#527 Honey I CRISPR'd the Kids
This week we're coming to you from Awesome Con in Washington, D.C. There, host Bethany Brookshire led a panel of three amazing guests to talk about the promise and perils of CRISPR, and what happens now that CRISPR babies have (maybe?) been born. Featuring science writer Tina Saey, molecular biologist Anne Simon, and bioethicist Alan Regenberg. A Nobel Prize winner argues banning CRISPR babies won’t work Geneticists push for a 5-year global ban on gene-edited babies A CRISPR spin-off causes unintended typos in DNA News of the first gene-edited babies ignited a firestorm The researcher who created CRISPR twins defends...