Sebastian Ulbert of the Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology in Germany will develop a simple and safer method to inactivate viruses to reduce the cost of vaccine production. Currently the production of inactivated viral vaccines requires treating the viruses over several weeks with toxic chemicals which then need removing. This procedure is time-consuming, hazardous and costly and reduces vaccine activity. They have developed a low energy electron irradiation method that more safely and rapidly inactivates the pathogens by damaging only nucleic acids while leaving intact the protein antigens that trigger the desired protective immune response. They will adapt their approach for the production of a poliovirus vaccine and test different techniques and protocols for scaling up the technology to commercial vaccine production.
More information about New Interventions for Global Health: Vaccine Manufacturing