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Vaccine Helper Boosts Immune System

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Aired 2/14/11

A newly made compound may boost the body’s immune response to vaccines.

— New technology developed at San Diego State University is paving the way for new and better working vaccines.

After 25 years of work, SDSU’s Bioscience Center researcher Edward Morgan, PhD., and research partner Sam Sanderson, PhD. of the University of Nebraska, said they’ve found a way to make vaccines work better.

Morgan and his research team made a protein-based compound called “EP67." The new compound reverses the aging process of the immune system in laboratory tests.

A younger immune system typically responds better to vaccines and usually fights infection better than an older immune system, said Morgan.

“We are able to shift the immune response so we can make an aged individual look more like a young individual and therefore (attack) the disease in a much better fashion,” he said.

Morgan went on to explain how the vaccine activators work. “We basically change the pattern of how the body responds to the given vaccine.”

More research is to be done on EP67 with the hope it will lead to new vaccines against drug-resistant bacteria, like MRSA (Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus), as well as viral and fungal infections.

It could also be used in vaccines veterinarians use with farm animals and pets.

In the meantime, Morgan and his team of researchers are marketing EP67 to pharmaceutical companies for human clinical trials.

If all goes well, EP67 could be on the market in next five years.

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