New Flu Vaccine Can Give Lifetime Protection

by Medindia Content Team on  August 7, 2005 at 7:11 PM General Health News   - G J E 4
New Flu Vaccine Can Give Lifetime Protection
A new innovative vaccine for flu is under pre-clinical phase of trail and make soon be available and provide lifetime protection against flu.

Flu is caused by virus and the present vaccine protects against three strains of the virus. . Flu is an extremely contagious condition and makes one feel really ill. In addition, flu can have extremely serious consequences: According to the World Health Organization, on average 10 to 20% of the world's population is infected by flu every year. This leads to 3 to 5 million hospitalizations and 250 000 to 500 000 deaths a year.

The current vaccine is not produced by the growth of viruses, but the active component is produced in bacteria. Therefore the production process will be more effective, safer and cheaper.

This week the Flanders University Institute for Biotechnology (VIB) has entered into an agreement with the British company Acambis for the development of a new flu vaccine.

Together VIB and Acambis want to develop a universal flu vaccine that offers protection from all flu variants. Furthermore this vaccine will not need to be renewed annually. VIB researchers linked to the Ghent University - led by Walter Fiers, professor Molecular Biology and former director of one of the Ghent VIB departments - carried out the research on which this new flu vaccine is basedVIB and the British company Acambis are collaborating on the development of a universal flu vaccine that offers protection to all flu variants. Walter Fiers, co-inventor ( UGent and VIB ) said:

'The structure of M2e is almost identical in all known flu viruses that can be transmitted between people. We indicated that the M2e vaccine offers full protection to flu without side effects in mice. This way vaccination against all human flu viruses is possible, not only against viruses returning yearly, but even against future epidemics. Through our cooperation with Acambis we can continue the development of this promising vaccine.'

Vaccination offers the most efficient protection to flu. The present flu vaccines are a mixture of three vaccines, each offering protection to a certain virus strain. Vaccination reduces death and the amount of hospitalizations as a result of flu considerably. The government strongly advises flu vaccination for those over 60 years old, diabetes patients, people with diminished resistance or chronic kidney, heart and lung disorders. However, everyone can consider vaccination: it will give you 80% less chance of getting the flu next winter.

For further information contact: Karine Clauwaert 32-9-244-6611 VIB, Flanders Interuniversity Institute of Biotechnology (News Source:

Medindia on Influenza Virus: Cold is an illness that is short in duration, usually less than two weeks, does not usually produce fever, except in children. It is most prevalent among children, and seem to be related to youngsters' relative lack of resistance to infection and to contacts with other children in schools. The common cold causes irritation and drainage in any or all of the airways including the nose, sinuses, throat, voice box, and often the bronchial tubes.

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