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ISSN: 2157-2526

Journal of Bioterrorism & Biodefense
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Commentary

Anthrax Bioterrorism and Current Vaccines

Shan Chen* and Mingtao Zeng

Center of Excellence for Infectious Diseases, Department of Biomedical Sciences, Paul L. Foster School of Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, 5001 El Paso Drive, El Paso, Texas 79905, USA

*Corresponding Author:
Shan Chen
Center of Excellence for Infectious Diseases
Department of Biomedical Sciences
Paul L. Foster School of Medicine
Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
5001 El Paso Drive, El Paso, Texas 79905, USA
Tel: +1 915 7831241 ext. 254
Fax: +1 915 7831271
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: December 06, 2011; Accepted Date: February 03, 2012; Published Date: February 16, 2012

Citation: Chen S, Zeng M (2012) Anthrax Bioterrorism and Current Vaccines. J Bioterr Biodef S4:003. doi: 10.4172/2157-2526.S4-003

Copyright: © 2012 Chen S, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Abstract

Bacillus anthracis a Category A agent with the potential to be used in a large-scale bioterrorism attack. The current vaccine, known as Anthrax Vaccine Adsorbed (AVA), consists of a culture filtrate from an attenuated strain adsorbed to aluminum salts as an adjuvant. Although considered to be safe and effective, it is difficult to produce large amounts within a short time frame. Thus, there exists a need to produce a new-generation vaccine against anthrax that can be produced quickly. In order for the new candidate vaccines to be effective, they must elicit a high titer of antibodies against protective antigen (PA). PA neutralization minimizes host susceptibility to anthrax toxemia. In addition, eliciting antibodies against additional virulence factors, such as capsule antigens of B. anthracis, may enhance clearance of pathogen from host. This review will discuss the history of bioterrorism and current vaccine development against anthrax. To date, there have been advances in vaccine design that utilize manipulated spores, modified protein subunits, conjugated vaccines and viral delivery vehicles. Utilizing one or more of these advances may provide a new, better vaccine against anthrax.

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