Recombinant Adenovirus

Recombinant adenoviruses are an important part of the research and development of new vaccines. Here are some important facts about recombinant adenoviruses.

What Is A Recombinant Adenovirus?

A recombinant adenovirus is a special class of virus that can act as a host for a new genome. This means that researchers can insert a gene of interest into this virus and the virus will remain stable. The virus then replicates itself, along with the new viral code, so that the sample multiplies.

The cells are permanently altered once a pathogen or genome is inserted. They may behave differently depending on what part of the genome is inserted. However, the goal is to get the cells to reproduce normally and remain stable.

Benefits Of Working With Adenovirus

There are several benefits of using adenovirus for research and vaccines. First of all, this is a relatively safe process that has been used to develop many vaccines. We have very reliable procedures for using the adenovirus in lab studies. It is a very consistent virus, where research can predict the behavior of the recombinant adenovirus.

Finally, it is much safer to work with an altered adenovirus rather than to work directly with a pathogen. If researchers directly experiment on a virulent pathogen, there is a higher chance of virulent pathogens escaping and causing illness. The experimentation may also produce mutations of the pathogen, making it stronger and harder to combat. An altered adenovirus is easier to work with because, in most cases, it is not virulent. The recombinant vector is replication deficient because certain genes are removed from the virus for scientific study. Adenovirus serotypes 2 and 5 are most often employed when labs create recombinant adenoviral vectors.

Using Recombinant Adenovirus For Vaccine Studies

The recombinant adenovirus is invaluable for vaccine studies. It provides a cost-effective and reliable way to study the effects of a certain genetic code. Researchers can create a large sample of the altered virus to study the behavior of certain virulent pathogens. They can also be developed as vaccines.

For instance, researchers can insert part of a pathogen’s genetic material into an adenovirus. The virus is then inserted into a patient’s body. The body recognizes certain markers of the pathogen and produces antibodies against it. Then, if the person becomes infected with the real pathogen, the body already has antibodies in place to fight the infection.  This is how the recombinant adenovirus can help in vaccine studies.

Is Adenovirus Vaccination Safe?

Generally, it is safe to use an adenovirus as a vaccine. Since the virus is not injected with the entire genetic code of the pathogen, it does not become a disease-causing agent. Essentially, it is like inserting a deactivated pathogen into the body so that the body can learn to fight it off in the future.

Precautions For Using The Adenovirus In Research

There are infinite possibilities when using the recombinant adenovirus as a vector for disease studies. However, in the early stages of research, there are several precautions that need to be taken in order to prevent accidents with a recombinant adeno-associated virus. If a harmful genetic mutation of the adenovirus is released in the atmosphere, it can have dire effects for public health.

One main precaution is to keep the sample controlled. Researchers must start with small samples, making sure to avoid personal exposure to the virus. Basic precautions will include gloves, goggles, and sometimes hazmat suits or other full-body protection. The adenovirus samples should remain covered and stored in a place where the virus cannot escape into the atmosphere. Many tests need to be done to ensure that the viral vaccine is safe, reliable, and effective for people of different genetic backgrounds. When used correctly, adenovirus research can be very beneficial to researchers and the general population.