At our research center, in Orth an der Donau, Austria our scientists are working to apply these technologies both to new vaccines and to improving the safety and efficacy of existing vaccines. The technologies in which we have special expertise – polysaccharide carrier protein conjugation, recombinant expression systems and cell culture – have the potential to open the door to a whole new generation of vaccines, both antibacterial and antiviral.
At our research center, in Orth an der Donau, Austria, our scientists are working to apply these technologies both to new vaccines and to improving the safety and efficacy of existing vaccines.
Polysaccharide based vaccines depend on the production of an antibody response to epitopes contained within the polysaccharide capsule of the bacterium. Polysaccharide vaccines can provide protection against some bacterial infections, but are usually ineffective in the immature immune systems of children under two years of age. By coupling the polysaccharide to a carrier protein molecule, conjugate vaccines stimulate a strong immune response to the polysaccharide moiety of the conjugate and have worked remarkably well in infants. Our research group is working on the development of a range of polysaccharide based vaccines, conjugated with novel carrier proteins.
Other bacteria have a surface structure which is only very weakly antigenic. However, our expertise in recombinant technology will potentially enable us to produce high concentrations of bacterial surface antigens, allowing the induction of immunity to bacteria not previously considered susceptible to vaccines.
Using these technologies, Baxter is currently developing a vaccine against Lyme disease.
Vero cell technology
Baxter’s aim is to produce its new viral vaccines from continuous cell lines. These have a number of advantages, such as excellent growth characteristics, simple media requirements and product consistency. Furthermore, vaccines produced with this method are free from egg protein, contain no thiomersal and also no antibiotic additives.
The safety of Vero cells for the production of biologicals has been demonstrated for about 20 years by administering more than 100 million doses of polio vaccine worldwide in more than 60 countries. The Vero cell line technology is an ideal platform for the production of a variety of different viruses such as those of Influenza, Vaccinia, West Nile (WN), and SARS coronavirus.