Edible Vaccines To Become A Reality Soon!
The concept of edible vaccines has taken yet another step towards reality. The Nobel Prize winner Dr Barry Marshall has identified a few strains of the peptic ulcer causing bacteria Helicobactor Pylori, that could be utilized as a vaccine to keep away infections.
The novel concept that is associated with this particular vaccine is that it is edible. Dr. Marshall has proposed removing the harmful genes of the microbe and colonizing the stomach with the genetically modified bacterium. A glass of milk might be the perfect way to feed the vaccine to young children, he stated. He is currently focusing on eradicating influenza by this particular method and hopes to infuse the bacteria with genes taken from the influenza-causing virus.
Test doses were given to a number of healthy volunteers at Perth who consumed vaccine infused beef and chicken broths. The study showed that the bacteria could successfully colonize the human gut even when taken orally as food. Similar work on flu causing viral genes are yet to be carried out.
Marshall disclosed his findings at the “World Vaccine Congress Asia” held in Singapore in the last week of June. Children from the Third World countries would thus be able to gain access to immunization, which is usually a hugely expensive affair in these countries. The need for the doctor and sterilizing syringe will become completely redundant, as children will simply be able to get their immunization doses in timely manner courtesy common food products like milk, yogurt, or chicken broth.
He also hopes to counteract high mortality infections such as cholera and whooping cough with strains of modified Helicobacter pylori. The vaccine, still in the testing stages showed no adverse reactions and Dr. Marshall hopes that the revolutionary vaccine would be made available to the public within two years of gaining approval.
The bug for the trials had been collected from elderly Swedish citizens who had never felt the ill effects of harboring the bacteria within their bodies. The scientists hope to give the vaccine to the next batch of the volunteers in the form of yogurt which he believes will be a better edible vaccine.
Marshall and his team hope that the drug proves to be effective for a long time and the research teams is currently engaged in developing different kinds of vaccines for different diseases. Serious ailments like tuberculosis and HIV could also be addressed in the near future, says Marshall. He also hopes to produce some booster doses which can be taken in the same way through food preferably milk or milk products like shakes, yogurts, desserts or in the form of frozen powders.
Well, we at ifoods are keeping our fingers crossed for now. Hopefully, the day when we can be inoculated with a glass of milk may not be too far away!
Image Credit- microrespiratorysystem.blogspot.com