Ohio State researchers progress toward Zika vaccine

From The Lantern
September 14, 2018

A Zika virus vaccine developed at Ohio State has shown to be an encouraging prospect for human trial.

If proven safe and effective, it could be the first known human Zika vaccine developed. Ohio State researchers published their findings in the Natural Communications journal in early August.

According to a news release from Ohio State, Jianrong Li, associate professor at Ohio State and lead researcher of this study, said the vaccine is extremely effective and has proven to be provisionally successful.

While the vaccine still needs to be tested on humans, it showed positive responses in mice. In the study, the vaccine transmitted up to three Zika proteins that activate the mouse immune system. By doing so, it was able to prevent the mouse from later contracting the virus.

“In this study, the vaccine was potent, safe and highly effective, at least in the short term,” Li said in the news release. “There’s a long way to go, but we think this is a promising candidate for a human vaccine.”

Though the Center for Disease Control reported the Zika virus was first discovered in 1947, there were no major outbreaks until 2007 in the Federated States of Micronesia. In 2015, a major outbreak struck the globe again, putting at least 170 million people at risk of contracting the virus.

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