Published in Vaccine Weekly, August 23rd, 1999
The vaccine "self replicates" by borrowing a replicase polyprotein derived from Semliki forest virus. The replicase (Rep-LacZ) drives replication of the RNA to which it is linked. This greatly increases the amount of vaccine-encoding RNA within the target cell.
The vaccine's extraordinary efficacy, however, is not a direct result of extra antigen: in vitro studies showed that it produced only a little more than twice as much antigen as a conventional DNA vaccine. Instead, the self-replicating vaccine...
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