‘Instant Immunity' in the Works

Scripps Research Institute research vaccinations to provide instant immunity

What if you could get a shot that would protect you from cancer, an anthrax attack or viruses

Scientists at the Scripps Research Institute have found a way to use specially programmed chemicals to elicit immediate immune responses in lab mice against two types of cancers. And that could lead to new methods in vaccination to protect against disease.

The problem with vaccines right now is that it usually takes weeks, sometimes months for the shot to build up an effective immune response

"The advantage of this method is that it opens up the possiblity of having antibodies primed and ready to go in the time it takes to receive an injection or swallow a pill. This would apply whether the target is a cancer cell, flu virus, or a toxin like anthrax that soldiers or even civilian populations might have to face during a bioterrorism attack," said  Scripps Professor Carlos Barbas

The researchers' approach to a vaccine with instant immunity dffers from the current approach in that theirs is chemically-based rather than biologically based using proteins or viruses for example.

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