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New study suggests why vaccines directed against cancer, HIV don't work
Date:12/13/2007

events are required for successful human reproduction.

H. pylori is a bacteria known for causing stomach ulcers. Schistosomes live inside our bodies, resisting many types of immune responses. Aggressive tumor cells also can defeat the immune system; this killed more than half a million people in the United States last year. HIV-infected immune cells cause AIDS. The common thread is that each carries Lewis sequences. Clark said this evidence suggests that vaccines are likely ineffective against these diseases because Lewis sequences shut down the specific immune response that enables vaccines to work.

If aggressive cancers and pathogens are using the same system of universally recognizable markers to trick the immune system into thinking theyre harmless, we need to determine exactly how this interaction works, Dell said. This is where were planning to take this research next. Understanding how these markers work at a basic biological and chemical level could lead to new ways to treat or prevent cancers and these other diseases in the future.

This work is creating an entirely new way of thinking about how we must combat viruses like HIV and aggressive tumor cells, Clark said. We have literally spent billions of dollars developing vaccines for AIDS and cancer. However, the latest high profile HIV and tumor vaccine trials have been spectacularly unsuccessful, perhaps for some very good reasons. We must become more clever if we are ever going to solve the problems of cancer and AIDS.


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Contact: Christian Basi
BasiC@missouri.edu
573-882-4430
University of Missouri-Columbia
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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