Researchers from The Pirbright Institute have generated the first monoclonal pig antibodies against swine influenza (flu), recognizing the same sites of the virus as humans.
Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) were produced in laboratory to recognise the same two main sites of the flu virus haemagglutining protein, that are also targeted by human antibodies. Pigs treated with one of the mAbs prior to infection were protected from severe disease and the flu virus was eliminated from their lungs. The results indicate that the pig is an excellent model for understanding how best to apply mAbs as therapy in humans and that pig antisera might be used to detect influenza antigenic drift and thereby inform vaccine recommendations for humans.
These results are a fantastic demonstration of how The Pirbright Livestock Antibody Hub can promote the use of new tools and methods, providing the opportunity to examine detailed antibody responses to inform the next generation of vaccines and therapies. This work reinforces the use of pigs as powerful model to predict human responses in infection and vaccination.
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