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Newly Developed RNA-Based Vaccine Could Offer Lifelong Protection From the Flu 156

Posted by samzenpus
from the one-shot-to-rule-them-all dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A new experimental flu vaccine made out of messenger RNA that may work for life is now being developed. German researchers said on Sunday that the vaccine, made of the genetic material that controls the production of proteins, protected animals against influenza and, unlike traditional vaccines, it may work for life and can potentially be manufactured quickly enough to stop a pandemic (abstract)."
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Newly Developed RNA-Based Vaccine Could Offer Lifelong Protection From the Flu

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  • Or... (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:01PM (#42099625)

    Mutate you into some sort of strange half-man/half-flu monstrosity. 50/50. Could go either way.

    • Re:Or... (Score:5, Funny)

      by Culture20 (968837) on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:16PM (#42099775)

      strange half-man/half-flu monstrosity

      How's that work? A man that constantly seeks to deposit his genetic material into others with a side effect of replication? That's 100% man!

  • by Anonymous Coward
    .... I like sick days.
    • by Trepidity (597)

      You know that you don't have to actually be sick to take sick days?

      • Re:DO NOT WANT.... (Score:5, Informative)

        by CRCulver (715279) <crculver@christopherculver.com> on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:40PM (#42099949) Homepage

        You know that you don't have to actually be sick to take sick days?

        In Finland (and possibly the other Nordic countries whose welfare states served as a model for Finland's) you don't get a sick day unless you visit your neighbourhood's clinic in the morning and get a doctor to sign off on the sick day. On the plus side, you get paid for the day.

        • Same in Australia. Except that the vast majority of doctors will just go "yeah, whatever" and give you a medical certificate. On one occasion, I've gone into a clinic on a work day, and the first thing the doctor said was "how long do you need off?"

          • That's not 100% correct. It's the culture here but many workplaces in Australia will (dependent on award and individual conditions) give you a minimum of say, 3-5 days a year out of your yearly allocated 10-20 where you don't need a certificate. Providing it's not more than 1 or 2 days back-to-back.
            • Yeah, but that's tangential to my point. The point I was making is that, even if you're nominally required to prove your illness, the system's held in so much contempt that circumventing it's trivial.

          • Depends on your job and your employer. I'm a software developer, in theory I'm supposed to provide a sick note, in practice I haven't done so since the early 90's because the Aussie software industry tends to treat it's professionals as adults. It's a stark contrast to the management mentality exemplified by the clock cards I punched on factory floors during the 70 and 80's. I have no doubt those sort of employers still exist, fortunately I had the good sense to take advantage of a government funded mature
        • by Trepidity (597)

          True, though in the Nordic countries you typically get ~6 weeks' vacation anyway, so there's less incentive to misuse sick days. It's mainly in the US where you'd want to, and there, they can't require you to see a doctor, because you might not even have health insurance.

          • Re:DO NOT WANT.... (Score:5, Interesting)

            by sandytaru (1158959) on Monday November 26, 2012 @07:00PM (#42100087) Journal
            Unfortunately, some of the more abusive low level employers still require a doctor's note anyway. One notorious telemarketing company in my town almost didn't give a dude his sick days because he didn't call in every day he was sick - the guy was in the hospital. It was only when the guy got the hospital itself off that they grudgingly gave him his time.

            Compare this to my current office, where if you so much as sneeze the boss looks at you with narrowed eyes and asks if you'd rather telecommute that day, rather than risk infecting the entire office.
          • by mattack2 (1165421)

            True, though in the Nordic countries you typically get ~6 weeks' vacation anyway, so there's less incentive to misuse sick days. It's mainly in the US where you'd want to, and there, they can't require you to see a doctor, because you might not even have health insurance.

            Why couldn't they require you to see a doctor? How is having or not having health insurance relevant? If you're a salary worker, it seems perfectly valid to confirm you actually are sick. If you're hourly, you don't get paid when you're

            • by Trepidity (597)

              If the company's willing to pay for the confirmation, then I agree, it seems valid. But not otherwise.

        • by tragedy (27079)

          Policies like that are just so stupid. I remember my University had a policy like that for being excused for classes (those classes that actually cared about attendance in the first place, anyway). The one time I truly felt sick enough to need to do that I ended up trudging uphill through snow in high winds in freezing weather to health services, where I got to sit waiting for over an hour so they could look at me and perform some pointless tests and tell me that I should rest and get plenty of fluids. With

        • In the United States it is wise to call in sick and come in the next day with sunburn (in summer) or raccoon face (from ski googles, in winter) just so the boss knows you aren't afraid of him and can replace the job before he can have your password disabled.

          Bonus points telling the boss you aren't going to do any work the day after your sick day because you are so hung-over. Doubly true if he's a recovering alcoholic or has a religious objection to drinking.

          Make sure the bastard knows his place.

        • by Angstroem (692547)

          In Finland (and possibly the other Nordic countries whose welfare states served as a model for Finland's) you don't get a sick day unless you visit your neighbourhood's clinic in the morning and get a doctor to sign off on the sick day. On the plus side, you get paid for the day.

          I don't know about you, but if *I* am sick, I'm in no way able to visit the nearest doctor's office (and definitely no clinic), especially not in the morning, because I'm fever-struck or similarly immobilized. Just feeling "meh" does not equal being ill.

          Luckily, I'm living in Germany where employers usually demand the sign-off only from the third consecutive day on -- unless people show an obvious tendency for being sick at Fridays, Mondays, bridging days, or denied vacation days; but who abuses a system of

        • by olau (314197)

          I don't know what people do elsewhere, but I've never heard of a company in Denmark that had that kind of policy. I think they can legally require you to see a doctor, and most companies will probably do that in blatant cases, but that's certainly not the norm.

  • zombies? (Score:5, Funny)

    by WillgasM (1646719) on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:15PM (#42099761) Homepage
    Are we seriously trying to bring about the zombie apocalypse now?
  • by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdotNO@SPAMhackish.org> on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:31PM (#42099881)

    Afaik this class of RNA-based vaccines is interesting but still very much at the research stage. There's been a large area of research on whether they could play a role in fighting cancer [hindawi.com], as another example.

  • Great idea .... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DaMattster (977781) on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:35PM (#42099919)
    But here is why it will never happen. The world's pharmaceutical companies that make money through yearly flu vaccinations will be fighting this thing tooth and nail. The profit loss from effectively eradicating the flu virus stands to be in the billions. Big Pharma will try and get it banned, labeled as unsafe, or do some other shifty thing to see that this idea is buried.
    • Re:Great idea .... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 26, 2012 @07:08PM (#42100165)

      This is why it is being done in Germany. Countries with socialized health care systems are putting a lot of funding into permanent cures.
      It is why when I graduate I will probably end up going to another country to work for a while. If you want to want to do permanent cures for disease then the USA is not currently the place to do it, the profit motive of medicine in the USA basically works against it happening.

      • Re:Great idea .... (Score:4, Informative)

        by Sulphur (1548251) on Monday November 26, 2012 @09:26PM (#42101417)

        This is why it is being done in Germany. Countries with socialized health care systems are putting a lot of funding into permanent cures.
        It is why when I graduate I will probably end up going to another country to work for a while. If you want to want to do permanent cures for disease then the USA is not currently the place to do it, the profit motive of medicine in the USA basically works against it happening.

        An example:

        Albert Sabin was ready for large-scale tests, but he could not carry them out in the United States. A rival polio vaccine developed by Dr. Jonas Salk (1914–1995) in 1954 was then being tested for its ability to prevent the disease among American school children. Salk's approach was to create a vaccine using a killed form of the virus.

        Some foreign virologists, especially those from the Soviet Union, were convinced of the superiority of the Sabin vaccine. It was first tested widely in Russia, Latvia, Estonia, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary, and East Germany from 1957 to 1959. A much smaller group of persons living in Sweden, England, Singapore, and the United States received Sabin's vaccine by the end of 1959.

        Read more: http://www.notablebiographies.com/Ro-Sc/Sabin-Albert.html#ixzz2DNmMbwbD [notablebiographies.com]

        • by mcgrew (92797) *

          Sabin used a "weakened" vaccine, and that is NOT a good thing. The military tests new drugs and vaccines on its members, and when I was in the AF I was given a "weakened" flu vaccine. I had the worst case of flu I've ever had.

          We're talking about polio and children here. A weakend polio bug might be far less deadly but still have very serious lifelong consequences. I have a friend who had polio as a child, and although it didn't kill him, it did leave him with a few physical challenges which are still with h

        • by geekoid (135745)

          THAT"S your example? They guy using a vary dangerous 'cure' couldn';t get approval to use his drug on children?
          That's a good thing.

      • by geekoid (135745)

        I posted this once in this thread, but since you are going to be a researcher, I'll do it again.

        The profit for treatment meme is false.
        Let me explain:
        You have a board, a CEO, and a bunch of other upper management people.
        The better the stock does, the more money they get.
        Announcing a cure increases you stock value. All those people make more money, right now.

        These companies are competing, sitting on a cure, mean your competitor may develop a cure, go to market and make money from there stock bump.
        And if it's

    • Re:Great idea .... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by blueg3 (192743) on Monday November 26, 2012 @07:33PM (#42100359)

      The guys that sell the current vaccines, sure. Their competitors, not so much. Permanent cures are good business because they're high-value products. You can charge a lot for them, you can get a lot of people to buy them, you can get the state to mandate them, you can get the state to pay for them, etc. The current flu vaccines aren't some endless gravy train -- they require a lot of work every year to actually get out the door and people (and governments) get pissy when you're late on delivery. A develop-once vaccine that's you can almost guarantee a sale of to each new person born is nice business, especially if it lets you screw your competitor out of yearly flu vaccine sales.

      The pharma industry isn't some monolithic ideal conspiracy. They have joint goals, but they're also made up of competing entities.

      If your claim was true, we wouldn't see companies continuing to sell vaccines and develop new vaccines that provide cures to diseases. But we do.

      • The guys that sell the current vaccines, sure. Their competitors, not so much. Permanent cures are good business because they're high-value products. You can charge a lot for them, you can get a lot of people to buy them, you can get the state to mandate them, you can get the state to pay for them, etc. The current flu vaccines aren't some endless gravy train -- they require a lot of work every year to actually get out the door and people (and governments) get pissy when you're late on delivery. A develop-once vaccine that's you can almost guarantee a sale of to each new person born is nice business, especially if it lets you screw your competitor out of yearly flu vaccine sales.

        The pharma industry isn't some monolithic ideal conspiracy. They have joint goals, but they're also made up of competing entities.

        If your claim was true, we wouldn't see companies continuing to sell vaccines and develop new vaccines that provide cures to diseases. But we do.

        =====
        bring on the placebo

    • Drug companies hate the flu vaccine. It's hard to make, expensive and the price is pretty much set by the governments. When we run short on vaccines or there is a production problem congress hauls the drug manufacturers CEOs in to chew them out in public so they can distract the public from whatever fiscal nightmare they've most recently sucked the country into.

      Drug companies make money off of things like Viagra. It's cheap, easy to make, involves sex, no one dies, has a near unlimited shelf life and doesn'

      • Drug companies make money off of things like Viagra. It's cheap, easy to make, involves sex, no one dies, has a near unlimited shelf life and doesn't have Jenny McCarthy making her idiotic appearances on morning shows misinforming housewives everywhere about what it does.

        Viagra's a good example. Tell us again what they were researching when they discovered it...

        • by tsotha (720379)
          What difference does it make what they were researching?
          • by Sique (173459)
            It does make a difference, because Viagra is most dangerous for people who have the most reason to take it - older men. Sildafenil was researched as a blood pressure and heart medicamentation, and it can be deadly if you have a heart precondition, as most of the elderly people have.
            • by daem0n1x (748565)
              At least they die with a smile on their face, instead of living a few more years in limp-dick misery.
            • by tsotha (720379)

              Well, that's true, but at least in the US you can't get it without a prescription, and you doctor is supposed to make sure you're healthy enough to take it.

              Also, the drug is used by younger guys who have performance anxiety problems, so it's not just sick old men that benefit.

            • by mcgrew (92797) *

              They're marketing it to the wrong crowd, that shit is magic. It makes you a super-lover. The best part is, if you're much older than 40 all you have to do to get it is ask the doctor for a prescription. But they should be marketing it to the young, considering how fat young women mostly are these days (not to mention those ugly-assed tattoos and piercings, ugh).

              You know the real reason why older men have erectile dysfunction? I'll tell you: same reason rich old men have wives half their age. Ever try to get

    • I really don't understand what your cynicism is based on. All established industries have an interest in preventing better products from replacing theirs, but how effective is that usually? I don't drive a horse and buggy.

      Specific to the pharmecutical industry, if it were possible for them to prevent effective cures, why would we have new effective vaccines ever? HPV, chicken pox, those are vaccines they didn't have when I was a kid. Tylenol would have an interest in keeping kids getting chicken po
    • Poe's Law strikes again. I actually can't tell if you're serious or if you're doing a parody of the "Big Pharma wants to keep us sick" conspiracy-mongering. If the former, you should be aware that profit margins on common vaccines are razor-thin. If the latter ... well played.

      • by fatphil (181876)
        Yeah, right, vaccines have never been good for business.
        http://www.in-pharmatechnologist.com/Regulatory-Safety/Novavax-shares-soar-80-as-swine-flu-spreads
    • by westlake (615356)

      But here is why it will never happen. The world's pharmaceutical companies that make money through yearly flu vaccinations will be fighting this thing tooth and nail.

      This is so stupid.

      Big pharma begins with Bayer and Aspirin.

      Big pharma has become bigger and stronger with every advance in medicine.

      Most of the victims of the 1918 flu were healthy young adults. Most polio victims were children.

      Solve problems like these and you keep tens of millions, hundreds of millions, of customers in the health care market for another half century or more. The return on investment is worth every penny.

    • by dywolf (2673597)

      That's BS and its always been BS.

      For starters theres no way they could get away with it without people finding out and grabbing their pitchforks and crucifying the company.

      Secondly, anyone who did hold it back would only cause increased incentive for a competitor to release the magic cure and get all the money instead. And if there's one thing companies hate, its letting their competitors get all the money.

      Lastly, most of these companies are part of conglomerates; and if there's one thing big business knows

  • Here is the catch: (Score:4, Insightful)

    by 140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:39PM (#42099943) Journal

    If the vaccine works in people,

    That is the catch. It has not worked so far in people, or animals for that matter. But $scientist speculates it might. Till more data comes through we should soak the RNA in snake oil before freeze drying it.

    • by Grayhand (2610049) on Monday November 26, 2012 @07:33PM (#42100371)

      If the vaccine works in people,

      That is the catch. It has not worked so far in people, or animals for that matter. But $scientist speculates it might. Till more data comes through we should soak the RNA in snake oil before freeze drying it.

      I wouldn't be so quick to dismiss it. I've been following this for a while now and the approach is sound. The standard ways viruses develop resistance simply won't work with this approach. It'd be a non specific antiviral so if should work on any virus. Sadly prions would likely be immune but not viruses. It's at least a decade off and maybe more but there is a lot of promise. There's reason to think viruses and bacterial infections will be treatable or preventable within the next 20 years. In the meantime we are loosing the war so we need out of the box thinking because millions will die while we are waiting for real treatments to be developed.

      • by mcgrew (92797) *

        In the meantime we are loosing the war so we need out of the box thinking

        God no, we've loosed enough war on this planet! Don't let it out of the box!

      • by Raenex (947668)

        loosing the war

        We've already lost the war on lose/loose, but now we have no word for loose. I suggest looce.

    • by suutar (1860506)
      actually, the quote says it has protected animals.
      • by wile_e8 (958263)
        The problem is that you assume he read the summary. With the "$scientists" stuck in there, this guy clearly read "vaccine" in the title and rushed in to make his screed against Big Pharma.
        • With the "$scientists" stuck in there, this guy clearly read "vaccine" in the title and rushed in to make his screed against Big Pharma.

          That was the first thing I thought when I read the post too, but on reflection I'm going to be generous and assume he's using the Perl-type "$descriptively_named_variable" syntax which is pretty common in geek discussions.

          • I didn't think it would be anything other than a variable until I saw your post. If he were being snide it would have been $cientist.

        • The $followup by $user is right.
    • That is the catch. It has not worked so far in people, or animals for that matter. But $scientist speculates it might.

      Slashdot: news for nerds who evidently aren't interested in scientific research?

      I suppose "nerd" has come to mean "I got an iphone 5!!!!" in popular usage, but I expect better of slashdot. This is a promising start and is very interesting. Even if it doesn't work in humans for the flu, it's still groundbreaking research in a very important subject area.

      Till more data comes through we should soak the RNA in snake oil before freeze drying it.

      NO!!! RNA is super unstable! You can't even put it in untreated water! Snake oil OR freeze drying it will render it completely useless! Hell, if you

      • by Chrontius (654879)
        I'm told working with RNA's a bitch and a half; while bleach will clean up (sterilize) any stray bacterial cells, a lab handling RNA has to be washed down with an eye-wateringly expensive RNAse cleaner to prevent any stray molecules from contaminating your sample and being amplified into the billions of copies by your next round of PCR. While you probably won't get a 1:1 copy of the foreign RNA, you'll ruin any hope of making a specifically selective test, or getting clean data from your next step. Good s
  • by Razgorov Prikazka (1699498) on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:49PM (#42100017)
    In these modern day's there are only two breaks a wage-slave has in the last bits of the year: winter break and the flu...
    Before you know it the boss will "offer" you this for free because it is "good for your health" and BANG! You only have the winter break.
    That means that you HAVE to break a leg or stick a skying pole in your left eye in order to squeeze out a little more... So in the long term it is actually bad for your health! Skying is dumb, and ending up at an ER room (that looks like a Kabul market after a bomb attack) by accident is even more stupid. But when actually forced to do so by your boss... man what time do we live in? :-D
    • by bmo (77928)

      So you've never called in while on the bike path on a bright sunny spring morning and said "It's a bright sunny day and I'm on the bike path and I'm calling in well"?

      Mental health days. Take them.

      --
      BMO

      • Much better is call in sick 'cough cough' then show-up the next day with sunburn/snowburn and a hangover.

        • by bmo (77928)

          >Much better is call in sick 'cough cough' then show-up the next day with sunburn/snowburn and a hangover.

          When you call in "healthy" you don't have to worry about this.

          "I'm on the bike path. I'm not coming in. Seeya tomorrow."

          What can they do? You didn't lie.

          --
          BMO

          • What can they do? Fire you for not being at work. Or charge your "vacation" account instead of your "sick" account (if you haven't yet switched to a single PTO pool).

            The whole idea of calling in sick is to get a free day off while not affecting your employment status or your vacation leave balance. Many old-school industries have not yet realized the value of combined PTO (i.e.: any business which hasn't considered the liability of the sick leave currently on their books).

            • by danlip (737336)

              Combined PTO encourages workers to come into the office even when they are sick so they can save their PTO days for vacation. Then they infect their co-workers and more productivity is lost. What is the benefit you are referring to?

              • And use it or lose it sick time encourages workers to claim sickness when they just want a mental health day.

                There are perverse economic incentives on both sides.

            • by geekoid (135745)

              PTO is horrid and it always, always, screws over the employee.

          • It's about managing you managers expectations.

            If they don't like it, they can fuck themselves. They should understand that.

    • The fact you believe your boss can force you to do anything other than leave the premises is what makes you a wage slave.
      • by geekoid (135745)

        Of course he can.
        When you are in a town without a lot of opportunity, that alone gives him power to force you to do something. The fact that it isn't immediate and violent doesn't mean it's not there.

    • by daem0n1x (748565)
      Or maybe you could have the labour laws of a civilised country, with mandatory paid vacation for everyone. But that's just me saying...
  • by slew (2918) on Monday November 26, 2012 @07:38PM (#42100405)

    I can't really see how this technique could offer lifelong protection from the flu, the current encarnation currently does not and it's not clear how it would all work.

    First of all, the vaccine they developed is a "hardened" mRNA that encodes the manufacture of a particular varient one of the two proteins (hemagglutinin or HA) that are found on the surface of a flu virus (the other one is neuraminidase or NA). In this case they chose the recent H1 part of the H1N1 varient was recently going around. This mRNA tricks the host's own cells to produce this H1 protein which triggers the immune response. In contrast, the "traditional" flu shot just has HA and NA proteins (usually made from dead flu viruses grown in eggs, but sometimes made in labs) in it along with some other "stuff" like adjuvents, to amp up the immune response.

    Unfortunatly this particular vaccine is like traditional vaccines in that it primes the immune system to look for HA/NA proteins, and these are the flu proteins that mutate all the time, so it would just provide life-line protection for one particular strain (and some close relatives), kinda like the current flu shot.

    The current breakthrough was in "hardening" the mRNA so that it isn't dissolved in you blood. These researchers discovered a protein called protamine can bind with the mRNA so that it can make it into enough cells so that the cellular mechanims can transcribe it into the encoded protein into H1.

    There is some promise that this technique could be easily adapted to target part of the flu surface proteins that don't mutate as much (whereas the current technique is mostly about refining HA/NA proteins so might not be applicable to something else) but that lifelong protection from the flu using a technique like this seems like a dream. I don't think anyone knows how to do that yet, although many folks are working on it and most of them aren't just relying on just stimulating a human immune response.

    On the other hand, as with most hype, there is a kernel of something there. The current crop of modern flu-treatments (like tamiflu) target the NA part of the flu virus (technically they are neuraminidase inhibitors, so they interfere with part of the virus reproduction cycle). Unfortuantly the NA part is the faster mutating protein and there have been cases where mutation in the NA part of the virus can circumvent these modern treatments. The HA part mutates more slowly and as I mentioned above, this particular treatment has been steered to target the HA part. Who knows, maybe you'd get a vaccine with mRNA for every HA subtype they know about***. Of course that is until there is another mutation. I'm guessing that on this basis they've annointed this new thing as having the potential "lifelong" protection from the flu. As for how this would be significantly different than just giving someone a regular flu shot with all the known HA subtypes, I don't see it. Seems like a bit of hype to me compared to what other folks are working on (e.g., specific artificial antibodies that target all HA subtypes).

    *** AFAIK, there are 17 types of HA, although viruses that infect humans don't appear to have that many variations, so maybe you could get away with just H1, H2, H3, H5 (the ones known to infect humans).

    • by Chrontius (654879)

      I'm guessing that on this basis they've annointed this new thing as having the potential "lifelong" protection from the flu. As for how this would be significantly different than just giving someone a regular flu shot with all the known HA subtypes, I don't see it. Seems like a bit of hype to me compared to what other folks are working on (e.g., specific artificial antibodies that target all HA subtypes).

      It's got the potential to be a self-boosting vaccine; normally without periodic "reminders" the body t

      • by slew (2918)

        s/DNA/mRNA/g

        FWIW, This is an mRNA technique (bonded with protamine to keep it stable). The claimed advantage of a mRNA techique over a DNA technique is that it doesn't have to get all the way into a cell nucleus (where the molecules that read the DNA exist). Since the actual protein synthesis is all you care about, it's likely more efficient to use mRNA, except that the mRNA breaks down (which is why they bond it with protamine).

        I haven't seen the timescale involved in how the protamine stabilizes the mRN

        • by Chrontius (654879)
          I'm referring to the ability to vaccinate against MS at all as the FM there. Gene vaccines are neat, but don't rise to that level of awesome just yet.
  • Researchers say that RNA vaccines are particularly attractive because, unlike proposed DNA vaccines, it is impossible for RNA to be spliced into the human genome, therefore cutting the risk that it could disrupt normal genetic behavior.

    So they do realize the danger of making heritable genetic changes. And then at the end they suggest giving it to children. How about just giving it to people who already reproduced? That would include old people who are some of the most at risk from the flu and possibly enou

    • by Chrontius (654879)
      It's worth noting that most flu shots are made with milk proteins, and people who are allergic to milk (distinct from "lactose intolerance") are just boned. Same with egg allergy - they're used to mass produce vaccines. But if most of the population is immune, there's nobody to give the allergic people the disease in the first place - we say they're protected by "herd immunity" as tactless as that term may be. And we're okay putting that into substantially everyone, risks and all. This way, we get to ex
  • If it keeps you from getting the flu but eventually kills off your cells, does that count as 'works for life?'
  • by Anonymous Coward

    The point of this new vaccine technology appears to primarily be one of cost. The idea is instead of vaccinating with dead / attenuated virus, or injecting viral proteins into someone to stimulate an immune response and thereby immunity, you can use RNA that will express the viral proteins in human cells (thus amplify the signal compared to injecting viral proteins directly) and get the immune system to generate antibodies against that viral protein. The RNA is designed to make only a part of the viral prot

  • I wonder if it is related to this [mit.edu] breakthrough by MIT last year. They developed an anti-viral drug which also targets RNA and should, theoretically, be effective against all viruses.

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