Researchers at a US university have discovered a protein, which is likely to help the more effective vaccinations to provide protection from cancer, HIV and influenza.
Researchers belonging to Boston University's school of medicine purified a protein - called PorB - found on the exterior of bacteria (neisseria meningidis) and used it as an accessory to provide a better vaccination response.
Vaccines, generally, can either increase the amount of antibody production or they can stimulate cells called cytotoxic T cells to kill the offending agent. The new protein is unique as it can do both.
The findings, appeared in journal of Scientific Reports, indicates a greater understanding of how vaccine enhancers work and can be best used.
"This study has wide implications as it cannot only be used to help the body identify and fight off bacterial infections, but it could also potentially help the body to use its own machinery to fight diseases like cancer, HIV and influenza, before they have a chance to establish within the body," said Lee Wetzler, corresponding author of the study.
The team used two experimental models - first model was given a vaccination with antigen and mixed PorB, while the second model was given the antigen alone. The model that received the protein - PorB -had an increase in the response to the vaccine antigen, evidenced by an increased number of activated cells in the lymph nodes and a gain in the production of cytotoxic T cells, as compared to the vaccination with the antigen alone.
"The antigen formulation with PorB triggers a sequence of cellular events at the periphery and in lymphoid tissue that are critical for the establishment of protection to a broad array of infectious diseases, and maybe for other diseases like cancer," Wetzler concluded.
News Source: ANI
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