Plant production systems for vaccines

Authors: Streatfield, Stephen J; Howard, John A

Source: Expert Review of Vaccines, 1 December 2003, vol. 2, no. 6, pp. 763-775(13)

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Abstract:

Plants offer an attractive alternative for the production and delivery of subunit vaccines. Various antigens have been expressed at sufficiently high levels in plants to render vaccine development practical. An increasing body of evidence demonstrates that these plant-produced antigens can induce immunogenic responses and confer protection when delivered orally. Plant-based vaccines are relatively inexpensive to produce and production can be rapidly scaled up. There is also the potential for oral delivery of these vaccines, which can dramatically reduce distribution and delivery costs. Here we describe the technology to develop plant-based vaccines, review their advantages and discuss potential roadblocks and concerns over their commercialization. We also speculate on likely future developments with these vaccines and on their potential impact in the realms of human and animal health.
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