Boston Children’s Hospital Develops New Way to Test HIV Vaccines

Researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH), a NEC member, have developed a new type of mouse with a human immune system, which can be used to test HIV vaccines.

Previously, scientists would insert a gene into a mouse, creating one antibody and then test a vaccine on that antibody. Now, the Program in Cellular and Molecular Medicine at BCH has been able to insert human immune system genes into a mouse in pieces, allowing for a broader range of antibodies that can be tested. This development has the possibility of drastically changing the way HIV vaccines are researched and evaluated.

“The model is to understand how to vaccinate an animal in a way that it will, on its own, start with the precursors of the antibody and develop a broadly neutralizing antibody,” Frederick Alt, director of the program said. “The goal would be to take a vaccine developed this way and vaccinate people.”

The New England Council congratulates Boston Children’s Hospital for continuing to innovate in the healthcare industry.

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