First Zika vaccine to be tested in humans #progress

Reported by CNN:

(CNN)The first human trial of a Zika vaccine will begin soon, Inovio Pharmaceuticals said Monday.

Inovio, which is based in Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania, and GeneOne Life Science, which is based in Seoul, South Korea, worked together on the vaccine. They previously collaborated to create vaccines for Ebolaand MERS, both of which are being tested.

The Zika vaccine, with the clinical-sounding name GLS-5700, will first be tested in 40 healthy volunteers. The first tests in humans should start in the next few weeks, Inovio said in a news release.
In the animal testing stage, the vaccine caused a strong antibody response, the company said. It is still very early in the vaccine’s development. Phase I of a vaccine trial ensures that it can be tolerated well in human subjects. If successful in this first round of human testing, it will need additional approval for further testing.
At the next stage, the vaccine would be tested on people who have Zika. Then there would be a stage to see how well it works on a larger group of people. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Disease at the National Institutes of Health, is leading a team that is trying a few approaches to a vaccine, including an approach using DNA like Inovio’s does. He believes that trial could start by the end of August. In the coming months, he said, we will probably be hearing about a number of vaccine candidates going into Phase I trials. “This is all good news,” Fauci said.
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Treating asthma by targeting the immune system? – T cells take my breath away! #science #twinning

A new connection between asthma and T cells in the immune system!! Props to my twin brother – one of the authors, and the featured scientist in the NIH video below! More info from the NIAID here – paper in Science Translational Medicine here, and featured summary –  T cell types that take your breath away.

A new study has shown that targeting two immune cells—Th2 and Th17—and their downstream, inflammatory effects is better than targeting just one pathway in the context of asthma. The researchers also show that blocking the Th2 pathway, which is a target of commonly-prescribed corticosteroid drugs, may unexpectedly boost conditions for Th17-driven inflammation. These results clarify how immune cells and their products contribute to asthma, and the work may enable researchers to design and test therapies that target both pathways. The study appears in the August 19, 2015, edition of Science Translational Medicine and included scientists from NIAID, the University of Leicester, and Genentech.

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#Science celebrity who? Inspiring career talk by Tony Fauci!! @NIH @NIAIDNews #scicomm

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In case you missed our tweets, I visited my brother and psgurel at NIH on Friday and crashed a talk by NIAID Director Anthony Fauci (one of our main science celebrities/science crushes). Fauci’s talk was about his career and how he got to each point of it. From growing up in Brooklyn, studying classics in college, researching and treating HIV patients, to dealing with the recent Ebola outbreak, Fauci said you can never see where your career might lead you. He truly is an amazing clinician, scientist, advocate, and communicator of science!

One piece of advice Fauci gave was to always be nice to everyone you meet, because you never know where they may end up (while showing a picture of him and then first lady Hillary Clinton –  he also more or less endorsed her for 2016, haha). I highly recommend trying to see Fauci talk if you can …. maybe he’ll be NIH Director one day 🙂

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The AMAZING Dr. Anthony Fauci on public health and vaccinations #RachelMaddowShow

Anti-Vaccination: An Extreme Public Health Risk | msnbc

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, talks with Rachel Maddow about the health risks associated with not being vaccinated, and the importance of dispelling the myths behind the anti-vaccination argument.

#Ebola Quotable: Dr. Anthony Fauci – No one is doing enough, global community needs to get involved!

faucmad

There is no one country that can do it alone… we are going to need multiple countries coming in and stepping to the plate. Organizations, NGO’s, so it’s not going to be one person or one group or one country thats going to be doing it. And that’s one concern we have. Because as the epidemic itself, in the speed of its expansion, outstrips the speed and quantity of the resources you put in, you’re always playing catch up ball. The only way to turn this around is to actually catch up. Right now, its all catch up ball.

Whenever you are behind trying to catch up, you can never say we’re doing enough. I mean no one is doing enough. We’re doing a lot and i think if we get the global community involved, that that’s going to be something that is compounding what you are doing, and is what you really need to do.

-NIH NIAID Director Anthony Fauci during an interview with Rachel Maddow

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