New vaccine to protect against TB?

Tuesday 6th September 2011
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A new vaccine could protect against tuberculosis (TB), after showing promise in a mouse study.

Research published in journal Nature Medicine found that a vaccine composed of genetically modified bacterium closely related to the bacterium that causes TB.

Scientists genetically modified M. Smegmatis - a relative of Mtb that is more or less harmless to humans.

They replaced a set of the bacterium's genes called esx-3 with corresponding but not identical genes from Mtb.

Mice who were vaccinated with the substance carried 1,000 times less the levels of TB bacteria and their counterparts who received bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) - a widely available vaccine for the disease.

This follows news of a pancreatic cancer vaccine, known as GV1001, which is being trialled at the Royal Liverpool University Hospital.

GV1001 is designed to work by teaching the immune system to attack cancer cell and could help people to recover from the condition.

Posted by Martin Lambert
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