Enterotoxigenic E. Coli, which is responsible for 60 percent to 70 percent of all E. coli diarrheal disease, also causes health problems for U.S. troops serving overseas and is responsible for what is commonly called traveler’s diarrhea.
A. Mahdi Saeed, professor of epidemiology and infectious disease in MSU’s colleges of Veterinary Medicine and Human Medicine, has applied for a patent for his discovery and has made contact with pharmaceutical companies for commercial production. Negotiations with several firms are ongoing.
“This strain of E. coli is an international health challenge that has a huge impact on humanity,” said Saeed, who has devoted four years to develop a working vaccine at MSU’s National Food Safety and Toxicology Center. “By creating a vaccine, we can save untold lives. The implications are massive.”
ETEC affects millions of adults and children across the globe, mainly in southern hemisphere countries throughout Africa and South America. It also poses a risk to U.S. troops serving in southern Asia and the Middle East.
Saeed’s breakthrough was discovering a way to overcome the miniscule molecular size of one of the illness-inducing toxins produced by the E. coli bug. Since the toxin was so small, it did not prompt the body’s defense system to develop immunity, allowing the same individual to repeatedly get sick, often with more severe health implications.
Saeed created a biological carrier to attach to the toxin that once introduced into the body induces a strong immune response. This was done by mapping the toxin’s biology and structure during the design of the vaccine. Saeed’s work was funded in part by a $510,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health.
After creating the carrier in a lab at MSU, Saeed and his team tested it on mice and found the biological activity of the toxin was enhanced by more than 40 percent, leading to its recognition by the body’s immune system. After immunizing a group of 10 rabbits, the vaccine led to the production of the highest neutralizing antibody ever reported for this type of the toxin.
Saeed hopes that human clinical trials could begin late in the year.
There also are several other human health implications for the vaccine, besides providing immunity against most E. coli disease, according to Saeed. Many patients who undergo anesthesia during a medical procedure surgery suffer from post-operative paralytic ileus, or an inability to have a bowel movement. A small oral dosage of the vaccine could act as a laxative, which often aren’t prescribed after a surgery for fear of side effects, Saeed said. A small dose also could help with urinary retention.
The vaccine will be available for animals as well, Saeed added. He pointed out the E. coli bug also is a major cause of sickness and death for newborn animals such as calves and piglets, which in the United States alone causes $300 million in loss of agricultural products each year.
Michigan State University has been advancing knowledge and transforming lives through innovative teaching, research and outreach for more than 150 years. MSU is known internationally as a major public university with global reach and extraordinary impact. Its 17 degree-granting colleges attract scholars worldwide who are interested in combining education with practical problem solving.
Jason Cody | EurekAlert!
Oxygen can wake up dormant bacteria for antibiotic attacks
08.12.2016 | Penn State
NTU scientists build new ultrasound device using 3-D printing technology
07.12.2016 | Nanyang Technological University
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
08.12.2016 | Life Sciences
08.12.2016 | Physics and Astronomy
08.12.2016 | Materials Sciences