Anti-cholera vaccine project is advancing

Campaign News | Thursday, 13 January 2005

Cuban scinece appraoches breakthrough

HUMANITY is approaching the achievement of an anti-cholera vaccine thanks to a promising Cuban project, the scientific media has announced in Havana.

Carlos Gutiérrez, director of the National Scientific Research center (CENIC), confirmed that the experimental phase prior to clinical trials of the serum was recently concluded in South Africa, given that there are no cases of cholera on the island.

The cross reactivity and immune response potential of the 638 strain to neutralize epidemics in that country was evaluated in a joint research project. Gutiérrez stated that volunteer trials should start this year.

“The positive results of those and other tests,” he added, “mean that we can forecast that one sole vaccine candidate is enough to prevent the disease.”

Despite being free of cholera, Cuba is working on a vaccine against the water-transmitted disease of high incidence in the underdeveloped nations, where the vast majority of the 1.2 billion poor people on the planet live, the expert said.

The discovery of a transmission mechanism of genes that codify the cholera toxin is similarly a universal contribution and one that favors designing other strains for a vaccine candidate with higher environmental safety and inoffensive indicators.

The research has been awarded the American Microbiology Society International Prize, among other eminent distinctions, Gutiérrez stated on evaluating the labors of CENIC, which has trained more than 25,000 specialists in various branches of science.

The results are to be demonstrated at the center’s 14th International Congress, scheduled for June 27 to 30 in the capital’s International Conference Center, with the anticipated presence of 175 experts from 40-plus countries.

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