The National, Monday July 22nd, 2013
SYNTHETIC vaccine technology to combat Ross River Fever and new anti-cancer molecules are the focus of new research projects by students from Charles Sturt University’s (CSU) clinical science programme.
The projects will assist in the ongoing development of synthetic vaccine research and contribute to drug discovery work, which could form the basis of a new approach to the chemotherapy of several cancer types.
Microbiology lecturer in the school of biomedical sciences at Orange Dr Peter Anderson said Ross River virus was found in Australia, Papua New Guinea and the Pacific Islands and caused fever, severe joint pain and swelling that could disable a person for up to eight weeks.
“Occasionally some individuals can take up to 40 weeks for full recovery,” he said.
“We are mainly interested in Ross River virus for its potential as a model system to develop a different kind of vaccine technology. It is a great model system because of its broad host range.”
The students will produce a recombinant version of the virus and investigate the use of synthetic peptides in the production of a fully-synthetic vaccine.