Personalized Vaccines Made in Tobacco Plants

Fierce Vaccines  just spotlighted an article from this week's Scientific American, on a clinical trial of a vacccine for non Hodgkins lymphoma, which was derived by tobacco plants. Researchers produced tumor-fighting antigen within the plants by first extracting the gene coding for the antigen from white blood cells in patients' tumors, then inserting it into a tobacco mosaic virus in the plant.  As the virus spreads throughout the plant, more of the antigen is generated.  Harvesting the protein involves grinding up the leaves and separating out the antigen. So far, around 70% of participants showed improvement when injected with antigens targeting their tumors. For more from the source, read on.