Researchers at McMaster University have invented a new storage method that can transport life-saving vaccines to previously inaccessible parts of the world .
The invention is a stable and affordable way of storing vaccines for several weeks at temperatures up to 40 ° C. The new method suspends the active components of a vaccine in a dose containing a filled container of a sugar. gel combination that will dry to seal in the vaccine. Later, clinicians can restore the vaccine to water and administer it to the patient as they normally would.
Scientists say combining the vaccines and the sugars is almost as easy as stirring the cream and sugar in a coffee.
For the use of technology For vaccines, engineers collaborated with health researchers across Hamilton's campus, specializing in virology and immunology.
The invention eliminates the need for constant storage at temperatures between 2 ° C and 8 ° C to keep the current vaccines viable. It will also eliminate almost all transportation costs, which can account for 80 percent of the total inoculation cost.
The method creates durable and compact doses that would be ideal for sending the Ebola vaccine to places like Africa, researchers say.
"You can use any kind of money to develop a vaccine, but if it is disabled at high temperature for an hour before you can give it to anyone, it doesn't matter," said Ali Ashkar, co-author.
The researchers have tested the method on mice as they have a similar immune response to a human. They used two test vaccines ̵
The materials used for this new method have already been approved by the FDA and simplify the path to commercialization. The researchers work with a commercial partner to get the technology to market.