Dec 4, 2021

Immune system-stimulating nanoparticle could lead to more powerful vaccines

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, engineering, nanotechnology

A common strategy to make vaccines more powerful is to deliver them along with an adjuvant — a compound that stimulates the immune system to produce a stronger response.

Researchers from MIT, the La Jolla Institute for Immunology, and other institutions have now designed a new nanoparticle adjuvant that may be more potent than others now in use. Studies in mice showed that it significantly improved antibody production following vaccination against HIV, diphtheria, and influenza.

“We started looking at this particular formulation and found that it was incredibly potent, better than almost anything else we had tried,” says Darrell Irvine, the Underwood-Prescott Professor with appointments in MIT’s departments of Biological Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering; an associate director of MIT’s Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research; and a member of the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT, and Harvard.

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