We still got hope for a universal flu vaccine. One with a powerful dose of immunization in a single shot that can offer long-lasting protection. Such a thing might turn out to be accurate after a particular variant dubbed FLU-c is currently into the last phases of clinical testing. Until now, researchers state that the results have been positive, and the vaccine has successfully reached the phase I and phase II of clinical trials. Even if those phases are restricted to evaluating the safety of the vaccine, there’s also proof it might be useful.
In the most recent round of double-blind, randomized, place-led trials, the vaccine was found to support antibody responses. Also, researchers discovered that the immune system varies among 175 healthy adult volunteers.
Even is such things don’t mean that the jab can defend against the flu virus itself, we still got some essential characteristics. Olga Pleguezuelos, from the pharmaceutical development form SEEK, explained: “…and the take-home message is that the vaccine induces cellular and antibody responses that can still be detected six months post-immunization.”
The universal flu vaccine might come out soon
The persistent resistance is invaluable, given how fast the flu virus can vary. Shapeshifters are known as the category of viruses collectively responsible for bringing the flu. Each flu season, research must forecast the next strains and produce vaccines. But, there are not efficient if the virus mutates mid-season or an unanticipated strain quickly pops-up.
According to Pleguezuelos, previous research centered only on discovering a “super antibody.” Antibodies are what make the current annual flu vaccine work. They bind to the free virus and stop it from infecting cells. As for the so-called super antibody, this would attach to all flu strains, in the same way, working more efficiently. But such an approach hasn’t been entirely proved to be successful.
Researchers focused this time on the virus itself. They utilized a computer algorithm and spotted all the places in the proteins of the flu virus that didn’t change over time. Then, they fastened on to those spots, while the virus took them for “a walk.” Pleguezuelos added: “FLU-v contains four different components against four different regions of the flu virus, so if one changed, three would still provide efficacy.”
The universal flu vaccine works by enabling T-cells that spot a particular area of the flu virus. Then, it triggers a series of phases in the immune system that blocks and eliminates the infection. Researchers explained that the vaccine is ready to reach phase III clinical development to test protection and potency against the actual flu virus.