The antibodies isolated from a group of patients who were infected with the 2009 H1N1 strain could guide researchers in efforts to design a vaccine that gives people long-lasting protection against a wide spectrum of flu viruses. Next, the research team is planning to examine the immune responses of people who were vaccinated against the 2009 H1N1 strain but did not get sick.
The surprise was that such a very different influenza strain, as opposed to the most common strains, could lead us to something so widely applicable.
Reference: J Wrammert et al. Broadly cross-reactive antibodies dominate the human B cell response against 2009 pandemic H1N1 influenza virus infection. Journal of Experimental Medicine. DOI: 10.1084/jem.20101352 (2011).
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Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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