Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

UR Discovers New Way to Boost Vaccines, Seeks Patent

05.08.2010
As the medical community searches for better vaccines and ways to deliver them, a University of Rochester scientist believes he has discovered a new approach to boosting the body’s response to vaccinations.

Richard P. Phipps, Ph.D., found that the same molecules used in drugs that treat diabetes also stimulate B cells in the immune system, pushing them to make antibodies for protection against invading microorganisms.

The University of Rochester Medical Center has applied for international patent protection for this discovery.

Phipps believes further research will show that low doses of insulin-sensitizing drugs might be useful as vaccine adjuvants, particularly for people with weakened immune systems who cannot produce a proper antibody response. This would include some infants, the elderly, and patients with chronic health problems that lower immunity.

Currently the only widely approved vaccine adjuvant in the United States is alum. A vaccine adjuvant is a substance added to a vaccine to improve the body’s immune response. Various forms of aluminum salts have been used for 70 years. (Adjuvants are added to some vaccines but not all. For example, live viral vaccines given during childhood and seasonal flu vaccines do not contain adjuvants.)

“The search is always on for new adjuvants and safe adjuvants,” said Phipps, a Dean’s professor of Environmental Medicine and professor of Medicine, Oncology, Ophthalmology, Microbology and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. “We are excited that we’ve identified a potentially important new and effective adjuvant.”

Phipps’ discovery grew from years of NIH-funded research investigating a protein called PPAR gamma and its ligands, which are present inside B cells and are involved in inflammation and in regulating the properties of immune cells and cancer cells. The way B cells evolve, or differentiate, is central to the body’s immune response.

A closer examination of the role of PPAR gamma in relation to B cell function showed that PPAR levels increase upon B cell activation, according to a study published in 2009 by Phipps’ laboratory in the Journal of Immunology.

Thus, researchers theorized that any molecule that binds to and activates PPAR gamma would, in turn, improve B cell secretion of antibodies. Researchers tested both natural and synthetic PPAR gamma ligands and discovered that the synthetic molecules used to create anti-diabetic drugs such as Actos and Avandia stimulated human and mouse B cells to better produce antibodies.

The drawback, Phipps said, is the possibility that too much stimulation would cause the immune system to overreact, triggering autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus. Additional research is needed to better understand this process.

The research was funded in part by U.S. Public Health Service grants. Phipps reported he had no financial conflicts of interest. Co-investigator was Tatiana Margarita Garcia-Bates, Ph.D., a graduate student in the Phipps laboratory. She is currently completing post-doctoral work at the University of Pittsburgh.

For Media Inquiries:
Leslie Orr
(585) 275-5774

Leslie Orr | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.urmc.rochester.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht New High-Performance Center Translational Medical Engineering
26.04.2017 | Fraunhofer ITEM

nachricht A promising target for kidney fibrosis
21.04.2017 | Brigham and Women's Hospital

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air

26.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ammonium nitrogen input increases the synthesis of anticarcinogenic compounds in broccoli

26.04.2017 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

SwRI-led team discovers lull in Mars' giant impact history

26.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>