Off-the-Shelf VLP Vaccine

Genetic engineering (cloning and protein expression) was used to produce viral proteins that self-assemble into virus-like-particles (VLPs). These genetically engineered vaccines are flexible so new antigens can be easily introduced to keep pace with antigenic changes that result from virus mutations. The off-the-shelf products are designed to replace current vaccines. Most vaccines for food-animals are prepared using conventional laboratory techniques. The pathogen is propagated, inactivated and prepared into a vaccine product. The VLP technology will eliminate the need to propagate and inactivate the pathogen. Thus, a well-defined and safer VLP product can economically replace the conventional vaccine.

Made-to-Order VLP Vaccine

A made-to-order vaccine is one that is designed to exactly match the antigenic properties of the pathogen. The VLP vaccines have the potential to replace these autogenous vaccines. Autogenous vaccines are prepared by isolating a pathogen from a farm, preparing an antigen product from that pathogen and then returning the antigenic product as a vaccine to the farm of origin. The VLP vaccines would eliminate the need to propagate the pathogens prior to vaccine production. Often these pathogens cannot be propagated under laboratory conditions making it necessary to grow them in animals. The VLP technology eliminates this problem and speeds up the time needed to produce a safe autogenous product.

Diagnostic Reagents

The VLPs can be used as an antigenic reagent in diagnostic kits. These VLP antigens work well in ELISA kits and typically produce very little background. The VLP reagents are a higher quality and less-expensive alternative to most conventionally prepared antigens used for ELISA based diagnostics.

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