From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Reverse Vaccinology
Mains level : Coronovirus and the hunt for its vaccine
The Tamil Nadu Dr. MGR Medical University has developed a vaccine candidate against SARS-CoV-2 through ‘reverse vaccinology’.
A definition based prelims question can be expected on Reverse Vaccinology. Ex. Which of the following statements best describes ‘Reverse Vaccinology’?
- Reverse vaccinology is an improvement on vaccinology that employs applied bioinformatics.
- The basic idea behind it is that an entire pathogenic genome can be screened using bioinformatics approaches to find genes.
- Some traits that the genes are monitored for may indicate antigenicity.
- Those genes are filtered for desirable attributes that would make good vaccine targets such as outer membrane proteins.
- Once the candidates are identified, they are produced synthetically and are screened in animal models of the infection.
- Since then, it has been used on several other bacterial vaccines.
- Earlier researchers had to do a viral culture in the laboratory to develop a vaccine, and this was time-consuming.
- The major advantage for reverse vaccinology is finding vaccine targets quickly and efficiently.
- Traditional methods took decades to unravel pathogens and antigens, diseases and immunity
- With ‘reverse vaccinology’ scientists know what molecules make the genomic sequence.