French Researchers Announce Progress on Hepatitis C Vaccine

A group of French scientists have announced promising results of a vaccine for the debilitating hepatitis C virus.

As reported by Reuters, a group of French scientists have made progress on a promising vaccine for hepatitis C.

There is currently no effective way to prevent hepatitis C, which can lead to liver disease and cancer, though there are some treatments under development that can be used on patients who are already infected. The disease, which is spread via infected blood, infects well over 100 million people per year and kills over 300,000 each year via associated liver disease.

The vaccine under development works by activating immune system proteins called neutralizing antibodies that have been found in tests to fight off multiple variations of the hepatitis C virus. It has shown success with monkeys and mice, but has not yet been tested on humans.

The vaccine’s commercial rights are held by the French company Epixis, which Reuters reports is being acquired by an unnamed US biotech company.

Around the Web

A Prime-Boost Strategy Using Virus-Like Particles Pseudotyped for HCV Proteins Triggers Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies in Macaques (abstract) [Science Translational Medicine]

New approach a step forward for hepatitis C vaccine [Reuters]