New strains of genetically engineered bacteria may improve the efficacy of vaccines for diseases that include the flu and pertussis, University of Texas at Austin researchers say.
The scientists created 61 strains of engineered E. coli bacteria to act as a new type of biological adjuvant to vaccines. Adjuvants are added to vaccines to make them more effective.
“It’s able to trigger the immune response without overdoing it,” said Stephen Trent, associate professor of biology. “We’re at the dawn of a new age of vaccine design.”
Results were published in January in the journal PNAS.