Medtech Meets Cleantech: Malaria Vaccine Candidate Produced from Algae

Cheap, green technique advances efforts toward malaria transmission vaccine in humans —

Researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine used algae as a mini-factory to produce a malaria parasite protein. The algae-produced protein, paired with an immune-boosting cocktail suitable for use in humans, generated antibodies in mice that nearly eliminated mosquito infection by the malaria parasite. The method, published Feb. 17 by Infection and Immunity, is the newest attempt to develop a vaccine that prevents transmission of the malaria parasite from host to mosquito. … Read the full story from the UC San Diego Newsroom


Dr. Joseph VinetzStudy senior author Joseph Vinetz, MD, is professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases.

Read article abstract

Clinical Trial Evaluates Engineered Smallpox Vaccine as Potential Liver Cancer Killer

As part of a multicenter clinical trial, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine are evaluating Pexa-Vec (JX-594) to slow the progression of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) or liver cancer. Pexa-Vec is a genetically engineered virus that is used in the smallpox vaccine.. … Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Tony ReidPhysician-scientist Tony Reid, MD, PhD, is principal investigator of this clinical trial of Pexa-Vec (JX-594) at UC San Diego, which is one of 42 sites participating in the study.

Reid is professor of medicine and medical oncologist in the Gastrointestinal Cancer Unit of the UCSD Moores Cancer Center. He conducts research in the center’s Solid Tumor Therapeutics Program.

For more information about the Pexa-Vec (known as TRAVERSE) clinical trial, call 858-822-5354 or visit http://traversetrial.com.

UC San Diego Biologists Produce Potential Malarial Vaccine from Algae

Biologists at the University of California, San Diego have succeeded in engineering algae to produce potential candidates for a vaccine that would prevent transmission of the parasite that causes malaria, an achievement that could pave the way for the development of an inexpensive way to protect billions of people from one of the world’s most prevalent and debilitating diseases. Initial proof-of-principle experiments suggest that such a vaccine could prevent malaria transmission…. Read the full story from the UCSD Newsroom


Dr. Joseph VinetzThe research team included Dr. Joseph Vinetz, pictured at left, and Dr. Fengwu Li from the Department of Medicine.Dr. Vinetz is professor of medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases and program director of the Peruvian/Brazilian Amazon Center of Excellence in Malaria Research.

Fengwu Li is an associate project scientist in Dr. Vinetz’s laboratory.

Read the study report in PLoS One (Open access article)

Article citation: Gregory JA, Li F, Tomosada LM, Cox CJ, Topol AB, et al. (2012) Algae-Produced Pfs25 Elicits Antibodies That Inhibit Malaria Transmission. PLoS ONE 7(5): e37179. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0037179

Cancer Center Evaluating New Treatment for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

Dr. Januario E. CastroMoores UCSD Cancer Center investigators have begun a clinical trial of a new treatment for chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

The study, a Phase I safety trial, is enrolling selected patients whose leukemia has resisted initial treatment or who have a particular chromosomal abnormality.

The study is headed by Dr. Januario E. Castro and employs a new leukemia vaccine that was developed from the work of Dr. Thomas J. Kipps.

Januario E. Castro, M.D., is Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Bone Marrow Transplantation.

Thomas J. Kipps, M.D., Ph.D., is Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology and Deputy Director for Research at the Moores UCSD Cancer Center.

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from UC San Diego
Health Sciences Communications

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Lung Cancer Vaccine Trial Begins at Cancer Center

The Moores UCSD Cancer Center has started enrolling eligible patients in a trial of a new vaccine for lung cancer.

Called Lucanix™, the vaccine is designed to help a patient’s immune system fight the tumor. It was developed by a local biotechnology company.

The chief investigator in the study is Lyudmila Bazhenova, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology-Oncology. Dr. Bazhenova directs the Lung Cancer Unit at the Cancer Center.

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from UC San Diego
Health Sciences Communications

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