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News Link • Vaccines and Vaccinations

Nasal spray nanovaccine promises no pain, more gain

• http://www.gizmag.com, By Antonio Pasolini
 A research team from Iowa State University is currently developing a new generation of vaccines that uses nanotechnology, and is delivered in spray form. One of the advantages of this new type of vaccine is that is can increase access to people living in remote areas because it requires no refrigeration and is simpler to administer.

Current vaccines typically work by introducing part of a virus or bacteria into the body, to trigger what is known as humoral response – the immune system’s ability to produce antibodies that prevent future infections. But more recently, science has started to focus on the use of T cells (white blood cells that monitor abnormalities and infections) to fight viral and bacterial infections, a possibility that these new spray vaccines also explore.

The formula of the vaccine includes protein sampled from the target virus or bacteria, covered in biodegradable polymers. Once sprayed or shot into the body, it will activate the immune system and trigger either the T cells or the humoral response to create specific immunological defenses, depending on the chemical composition of the vaccine.

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