Zika Vaccines Work in Monkeys, Boosting Hopes for People | NECN
Zika Virus Outbreak

Zika Virus Outbreak

Coverage of the spread of the Zika virus in the Americas

Zika Vaccines Work in Monkeys, Boosting Hopes for People

The experiment involved a traditional vaccine and two more cutting-edge ones

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    AP
    In this Feb. 11, 2016, file photo of aedes aegypti mosquitoes are seen in a mosquito cage at a laboratory in Cucuta, Colombia.

    Three experimental Zika vaccines protected monkeys against infection from the virus, an encouraging sign as research moves into studies in people.

    The success in monkeys, which involved a traditional vaccine and two more cutting-edge ones, "brings us one step closer to a safe and effective Zika vaccine," said Dr. Dan Barouch of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. "But of course, there's a lot more work to do."

    ‘Bathroom Bill’ to Cost North Carolina $3.7 Billion: AP

    [NATL] AP Exclusive: ‘Bathroom Bill’ to Cost North Carolina $3.7 Billion

    The Associated Press used dozens of interviews and multiple public records requests to compile an analysis that shows North Carolina’s “bathroom bill” is expected to cost the state more than $3.76 billion in lost business over a dozen years.

    (Published Monday, March 27, 2017)

    Barouch and others reported the results in a paper released Thursday by the journal Science. One of the vaccines is expected to enter preliminary human studies this year.

    At least two other vaccines have reached that point already. Inovio Pharmaceuticals announced last week that it had injected its first participant. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases gave its first vaccine Tuesday. Both studies focus on assessing vaccine safety.

    Efforts to develop a vaccine began after a massive Zika outbreak last year in Brazil, which showed that infection of pregnant women can harm fetal brain development.

    In the monkey study, one vaccine followed the traditional approach, using a dead Zika virus to train the body for fighting off infection. It was injected into eight rhesus monkeys and followed by a booster shot a month later. A month after the booster, the monkeys got a dose of Zika virus.

    First of Three Spacewalks Underway at ISS

    [NATL] First of Three Spacewalks Underway at ISS

    Two astronauts left the International Space Station on Friday to prepare the orbiting laboratory for the arrival of commercial space taxis and to tackle some maintenance.

    (Published Friday, March 24, 2017)

    None showed any sign of the virus in their blood for the week they were followed. In contrast, eight other monkeys that had gotten a sham vaccine became infected.

    That vaccine, developed at the Walter Reade Army Institute of Research in Silver Spring, Maryland, is expected to begin human testing in October.

    Bao Bao Makes Public Debut in China

    [NATL] Bao Bao Makes Public Debut in China

    Bao Bao made her public debut on Friday at a conservation and research center for giant pandas in China’s Sichuan Province.  Bao Bao was born in 2013 at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C.

    (Published Saturday, March 25, 2017)

    The other two vaccines, produced at Beth Israel and not yet scheduled for human studies, delivered only the DNA of a single virus gene. That spurred the monkeys' bodies to pump out a protein found in the Zika virus, which in turn gave their immune systems to attack on the full virus.

    The two vaccines completely protected a total of eight monkeys against infection.

    The results "add some encouragement that this might work in humans," said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the federal infectious disease institute, who was not involved in the study. The total protection is "good news," he said.

    Experts said it's impossible to know when a Zika vaccine will be approved for use.

    Man Who Broke Up Fight Between Teens in Viral Video Receives Honor in Atlantic City

    [NATL-PHI] Man Who Broke Up Fight Between Teens in Viral Video Receives Honor in Atlantic City

    Ibn Ali, the 27-year-old father of five who broke up a fight between two teens in a viral video, was honored for his actions in Atlantic City Wednesday. Ali was in tears as he described the impact his mother had on his life.

    (Published Thursday, March 23, 2017)

    "It's not going to be this year, for sure," Barouch said.

    Fauci said it might be early 2018 if not later.