Extending The Range Of Diseases Covered By A Rice-Based Vaccine

Astellas and the Institute of Medical Science at the University of Tokyo are expanding the range of diseases that can be covered by their rice-based oral vaccine, MucoRice.

AsianScientist (May 18, 2017) – The Institute of Medical Science at the University of Tokyo (IMSUT) and Astellas Pharma Inc. have signed an agreement to expand the scope of collaborative research on a rice-based oral vaccine for viral gastroenteritis diarrhea including norovirus infection.

MucoRice is a rice-based oral vaccine developed by Professor Hiroshi Kiyono, project researcher Yoshikazu Yuki and their colleagues at International Research and Development Center for Mucosal Vaccines in IMSU. Using rice that is genetically engineered to express the antigen of interest and suppress endogenous rice storage protein production, MucoRice activates the mucosal immune system in the intestine and induces a protective immunity.

Since 2016, IMSUT and Astellas have been conducting collaborative research on vaccines against cholera and enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli using the MucoRice system.

Under the agreement, the scope of the collaborative research project will be expanded to conditions where unmet medical needs remain, such as norovirus. Through this collaborative research project, IMSUT and Astellas will promote research on vaccines against infectious diseases and develop the new drug discovery technology platform for other diseases.


Source: Astellas; Photo: Shutterstock.
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