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Antibody discovered to fight A types of Flu

08-01-2011 15:40 BJT

BEIJING, August 1 (Xinhuanet) -- The first antibody which can fight all types of the influenza A virus has been discovered, according to American researchers.

Experiments on flu-infected mice, published in Science Express, showed the antibody could be used as an "emergency treatment."

It has already been suggested that some people who had swine flu may develop 'super immunity' to other infections. As a result, scientists from the Medical Research Council’s National Institute for Medical Research looked at more than 100,000 samples of immune cells from patients who had the flu or the flu vaccines.

From this sample, the researchers isolated the F16 antibody, which targeted a protein found on the surface of all influenza A viruses called haemagglutinin.

In the mouse model, scientists found that injections of the antibody protected the mice against lethal doses of the H1N1 virus, indicating “full protection.” Additionally, mice that were injected with the antibody up to two days after being exposed to the virus recovered and survived the flu.

This antibody cannot serve as a vaccine because it would need to trigger an immune system response. So its methods of enhancing protection are under investigation.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: Xinhua

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