Australian plant that produces antibodies may help in coronavirus vaccine production

Australian plant that produces antibodies may help in coronavirus vaccine production

Will 'old faithful' tuberculosis BCG vaccine work against COVID? Professor Waterhouse said, “We are now making this unpublished information available to any team working on fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. This will allow them to ‘tweak’ the genome to produce better quality vaccines and therapeutics that are tailor-made for use in humans.” He said that there is a race to develop a potent and safe vaccine to prevent the infection from COVID-19, which has led to the global pandemic. He explained that at present, the genomic sequence of the plant could help biotech companies develop vaccines in large numbers for mass use at a low cost. Problems Since the origin of this product is a plant, experts speculate that its development could be in biofactories. These biofactories would need to grow a large number of these plants for mass vaccine production. He explained that to develop proteins produced for the vaccine from the plant, the researchers would need “molecular farming” techniques. Biotechnology experts could use the plant by infiltrating its DNA to produce the proteins that could be used as the vaccine. The protein or antibodies would be created by these genetically engineered plants in their leaves. The plant can then produce the vaccine in its cells and sap, Waterhouse says. Way forward Nicotiana benthamiana is now being used by many nations in vaccine plant biofactory, and its genome has been decoded by a team led by Waterhouse in collaboration with the European Horizon2020 Newcotiana consortium . Waterhouse said in a statement, “We started the project with the Newcotiana consortium three years ago with the idea of making plants able to make larger quantities and better qualities of the vaccine and antibodies when COVID-19 was not known.” Nicotiana benthamiana leaf protoplasts expressing GFP. The cell wall was removed by treatment with enzymes (cellulase, pectinase). Image Credit: Heiti Paves / Shutterstock Waterhouse added, “As we go forward, there will always be a need to respond to new strains of viruses as they emerge rapidly. In recent years we have seen SARS, MERS, and now COVID-19. It’s fortunate that we are reaching the level of understanding of this biofactory plant and have progressed the Newcotiana H2020 project as far as we have, enabling and providing new and improved ways to meet current and future challenges.” What is the scope of this research? The genomic analysis of the plant could help in the production of a large number of vaccines and antibodies which this plant is capable of creating. The scope of this work has been published in an article in the latest issue of the Australian Academy of Science. Sources:



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