Friday, 29 January 2016

Zika virus No vaccine for Now – Researcher

Hi The hunt for a vaccine to prevent the Zika virus could take years, a top US health chief said Thursday amid a worrying outbreak of the mosquito-borne illness blamed for birth defects.
There is no vaccine or treatment for Zika, which the World Health Organization said is “spreading explosively” through the Americas and may lead to as many as four million cases in the region.
Zika has been linked to a rise in cases of microcephaly — abnormally small heads and brains — in babies born to infected women in Brazil.
Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), said the US government is working on two approaches toward a vaccine against Zika, based on research already done on related mosquito-borne viruses.
The first is a “DNA-based vaccine using a strategy very similar to what we employed for another flavivirus, the West Nile virus,” he told reporters. Flaviviruses are generally transmitted by mosquitoes or ticks.
“Secondly, a live attenuated vaccine, building on similar and highly immunogenic approaches used for the closely related dengue virus,” he added.
Hopes are high that a so-called Phase I clinical trial could begin later this year to test the safety and efficacy of a Zika vaccine in people, but Fauci cautioned that a finished product will take far longer.
What To Know About Zika Virus
The Zika virus is spread by bites of infected mosquitoes in the Aedes genus. The virus was first identified in the Zika Valley, in central Africa, in 1947, according to the Mayo Clinic. Over the years, it spread to southeastern and southern Asia, Pacific islands and the Americas. While it can be particularly dangerous to fetuses and Read More

No comments :
Write comments