Professor Ellen S. Vitetta, University of Texas is in the process of developing an effective vaccine against Ricin. Ricin is a very potent lethal toxin obtained from castor beans and is considered as the most deadly toxin at very minute concentration. The researcher as published her results from a trial on effective protection obtained from her ricin vaccine in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.
The researcher feels still a lot has to be done in developing an effective ricin vaccine which would help to protect people from ricin toxin as there is an increased threat of using ricin poison as a source of bioterrorism and biowarfare. Funding, as been a constraint for this research work and the researchers are sure that if there work could attract more funds they are sure of developing an effective Ricin Vaccine.
The researchers have developed a recombinant vaccine against Ricin called as RiVax which contains the mutated chain of ricin, Ribotoxic A which as been genetically inserted in to the DNA of Escherichia coli bacteria, initial studies on mice and rabbits have shown protective effect against ricin and a clinical study in 15 human subjects after ethical approval as shown considerable increase in antibodies against the toxin with minimum side effects of headache.