Celldex has flipped Dendreon's biological model on its head. With a goal of specifically and efficiently targeting a subset of immune cells in vivo, Celldex designed antibodies that bind to the internalization receptor (the DEC-205 receptor) on APCs, and are also tethered to the cancer antigen. The APC internalizes the antibody/antigen complex, and can then signal to T-cells to begin the assault on cancerous tissue. This method has the benefits of classical vaccines, as well as the specificity and efficiency of Dendreon's Provenge, with a fraction of the cost.
A Promising Platform for Cancer Immunotherapy - BMY, CLDX, DNDN, MRK - Foolish Blogging Network
Brittany Wenger isn’t your average high-school senior: She taught the computer how to diagnose leukemia.
The 18-year-old student from Sarasota, Fla. built a custom, cloud-based “artificial neural network” to find patterns in genetic expression profiles to diagnose patients with an aggressive form of cancer called mixed-lineage leukemia (MLL). Simply put, this means Wenger taught the computer how to diagnose leukemia by creating a diagnostic tool for doctors to use.
For the first time, scientists at Cambridge’s Department of Chemistry have been able to map in detail the pathway that generates “aberrant” forms of proteins which are at the root of neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer’s.
They believe the breakthrough is a vital step closer to increased capabilities for earlier diagnosis of neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, and opens up possibilities for a new generation of targeted drugs, as scientists say they have uncovered the earliest stages of the development of Alzheimer’s that drugs could possibly target.
The study, published today in the journal PNAS, is a milestone in the long-term research established in Cambridge by Professor Christopher Dobson and his colleagues, following the realisation by Dobson of the underlying nature of protein ‘misfolding’ and its connection with disease over 15 years ago.
Most people recall the Swine Flu epidemic of 2009. What many do not realize is that the vaccine took almost 9 months to develop and manufacture. A new study, published Wednesday in Science Translational Medicine shows that this time is being reduced drastically; flu pandemic vaccine manufacturing could begin in days, not months, potentially saving great numbers of lives. The study led by famed San Diego geneticist J. Craig Venter of the J. Craig Venter Institutealong with Rino Rappuoli of Novartis, revealed that they were able to design a vaccine in four days and four hours for a new strain of flu that had appeared in China. The new process is much faster, in part, because researchers can now use the genetic code of a virus to design its vaccine. "To my knowledge, this is the first real-world product from synthetic biology," said Venter.
The new mutant virus was easily transmitted between guinea pigs through respiratory droplets –
which the Chinese team said proved the deadly H5N1 virus may need but a simple genetic mutation to acquire the ability to get transmitted from human to human.
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