Human Antibodies Made in Cows Could be Developed to Treat MERS

Human antibodies made in genetically engineered cows have proved safe in an early stage clinical trial, U.S. scientists said on Wednesday, and could be developed into a treatment for the fatal viral disease, MERS.

MERS, or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, is a SARS-like viral infection first identified in Saudi Arabia in 2012 that has caused deadly outbreaks in the Middle East as well as sporadic cases around the world.

Despite more than five years of waves of infection, no effective treatment or vaccine has been developed against MERS, which has a 35 percent case fatality rate and has so far killed at least 740 people worldwide.

More than 80 percent of MERS cases have been reported in Saudi Arabia, according to the World Health Organization.

In research published in the Lancet Infectious Diseases journal on Wednesday, scientists found that human antibodies called SAB-301 generated in so-called transchromosomic cattle -- animals with human DNA incorporated into their genome -- were safe in healthy volunteers.

The antibodies also persisted for more time than the MERS virus typically remains in the body, the study found, with antibodies still detected in bloodstream after 90 days.

This points a way ahead for the antibodies -- which offer immunity against an invading infection -- to be tested in further trials in people infected with MERS, the researchers said.

“This is the first study to show the safety and immune effects of a potential treatment for MERS,” said John Beigel at Leidos Biomedical Research, who co-led the U.S. government-funded study. “The data from our study suggest that SAB-301 is safe, and further research into the treatment is warranted.”

The idea of using human antibodies has developed in recent years in a variety of severe and emerging diseases, including flu, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), MERS and Ebola.

Blood plasma harvested from people whose immune systems have successfully fought the disease contains the right antibodies and can be given to other patients to help their immune systems fight the virus.

But harvesting human plasma is not always easy or swift when a new disease emerges, so scientists turned to the idea of transchromosomic cattle as a way of manufacturing specific antibodies in larger amounts.

Transchromosomic cattle have human DNA that codes for human antibodies incorporated into their genome. To make SAB-301, they were injected with a part of the MERS virus, stimulating their immune systems to produce antibodies against it. The antibodies were then extracted from the cattle’s blood and purified.

“The process of creating antibody treatments by harvesting antibodies from human donors is slow and often small-scale,” said Beigel. “However, the cattle-produced antibodies could be created as soon as three months.”


Restricted HTML

  • Allowed HTML tags: <a href hreflang> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote cite> <code> <ul type> <ol start type> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <h2 id> <h3 id> <h4 id> <h5 id> <h6 id>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
Submitted by shawnkemp on Thu, 01/11/2018 - 01:18

Indeed scholarships to second- and third-year veterinary students in the United States will help students who are financially weak. But Gal Gadot Jacket in Cheap Price me a lot in making my resume attractive I think everybody should look at this services.

Submitted by Antonio kim on Fri, 01/12/2018 - 00:42

Antibodies are unique proteins that the body uses to safeguard itself against attacking living beings, for example, microscopic organisms, infections, and growths. This implies the vast majority who have been tainted with HSV will have the comparing antibodies. Harley Davidson Victory Lane Jacket

Submitted by Owen Garner on Tue, 01/23/2018 - 00:14

Antibodies are exceptional proteins that the body uses to protect itself against assaulting living creatures, for instance, infinitesimal life forms, contaminations, and developments. This suggests most by far who have been polluted with HSV will have the contrasting antibodies. UK Best Essay Writing

Submitted by John on Thu, 01/25/2018 - 00:04

I have known very important things over here. I want to thank you for this best read. I really appreciate sharing this great. playground rubber safety tile mats

Submitted by susanrichard on Fri, 01/26/2018 - 01:32

I have never been seen ever in my life I was just considering your blog, it was seem to be very good sound like thought-provoking and extra informatively for us uk assignment writing In that kind of articles most is appreciable by everyone

Submitted by Christopher Hardy on Thu, 02/15/2018 - 03:17

The early lactation milk is called colostrum, and carries the mother's antibodies to the child. It can reduce the threat of many sicknesses within the child.Online Essay Writing Service UK