Vaccine for human respiratory syncytial virus on the horizon
Source: Hipersynteza/Science Photo Library
Human respiratory syncytial virus (HRSV) is a major cause of respiratory tract infections in infants. High-risk children may receive prophylactic palivizumab therapy; however, no effective antiviral or anti-inflammatory treatment exists.
A vaccine against HRSV may now be on the horizon, following work by Bert Schepens and Xavier Saelens from Ghent University, Belgium, and team, published in EMBO Molecular Medicine (online, 8 October 2014). They have developed a vaccine based on the extracellular domain of the Small Hydrophobic protein (SHe) of HRSV and found that it induced immune protection in mice and rats, acting via a mechanism that differs from the natural immune response.
“The SHe-based vaccine could be linked to other candidate vaccines directed against the larger envelope proteins of the virus, to double hit the virus,” the researchers suggest.
Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2014.20066949
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