US University and PowderMed form alliance to test AI vaccine
The University of Massachusetts Medical School and the British
immunotherapeutics company PowderMed have formed a partnership to develop a
potential bird flu vaccine.
Under the agreement, PowderMed's DNA vaccine for avian flu (H5) will be
tested and analysed in the lab of Shan Lu, MD, PhD, professor of medicine and
leader of the UMMS DNA vaccine efforts.
Dr. Lu was part of the UMMS
team which pioneered fundamental elements of DNA-based flu vaccines in the
Results to date suggest that PowderMed's proprietary
prophylactic DNA-based vaccine will provide defence against influenza. PowderMed
will initiate phase II studies using both bird flu strains and annual flu
strains in 2006. Dr. Lu's lab will analyze the avian flu vaccine's ability to
generate a protective immune response in animals.
There will be no
live avian flu virus involved in the workâ€”only the DNA-vaccine
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