Microparticle: All Childhood Vaccines in Single Jab

The research team at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has designed a new type of vaccine for children, which could combine all the vaccines in one dose. The research is in the phase I of clinical trial.

The childhood immunizations programs contain vaccines for diphtheria, tetanus, polio, whooping cough, measles, mumps, and rubella among others.

The researchers at MIT have created a new type of microparticle, which contains all the infant vaccines in one single dose. The product is being experimented on mice for effects.

According to MIT Professor Robert Langer, the research team can create a library of tiny, encased vaccine particles that will be programmed to release at certain predictable time intervals. Children can potentially receive a single injection, which would have multiple boosters pre-built into the vaccine.

“We are looking forward for a breakthrough,” Langer added.

The particles, which resemble coffee cups, are filled with vaccines and then sealed with a lid. The cup is designed in a way such that the contents can break down at the right time inside the recipient’s body.

Experiments show that the contents are released at precisely 9, 20, and 41 days after the vaccine is injected into mice. The contents can also be designed to last for about hundred days.

Constant experiments display a slow release of medicines over a long duration of time. The concept is to release short and sharp bursts of vaccine, which will only mimic routine immunization programs.

According to MIT Fellow Researcher Dr. Kevin McHugh, there might be differences between not getting vaccinated and receiving all the vaccines in one single shot.

“Our development could have a significant impact on patients everywhere, especially in the developing world,” Langer said.

The vaccine, however, has not been tested on patients yet.