A biodegradable substance that shows higher activity than previously known adjuvants, which give more effectiveness to vaccines, has been discovered by Swedish scientists; thus raising hopes for better medicines for cancer and allergies.
Therapeutic vaccines can be used to develop inexpensive and improved drugs for diseases, but the lack of adjuvants has been a major block.
However, a research by led by scientists at Uppsala University, Sweden, shows a promising future for better medicines.
Lars Hellman, professor of molecular and comparative immunology at the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Uppsala University, said: "Therapeutic vaccines that target the same molecules in the body as the various monoclonal antibodies would enable us to reduce the cost of treatment significantly, and also decrease the number of visits patients need to make to the clinic."
To develop the immune-stimulating adjuvants, Uppsala University joined hands with Shemyakin-Ovchinnikov Institute in Moscow.
Hellman said: "We have made a very important breakthrough by managing to identify a substance that is biologically degradable and that exhibits considerably higher activity than the adjuvants that have been used in the past."
"These new and highly promising findings are an important step toward developing more cost-effective drugs for some of our major public health diseases," he added.
The study has appeared in the December issue of the journal Vaccine.