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DNA Vaccines: A Boon to Life

Author(s): Narayanappa M, Makari HK, Vadiraj KT, Thoyajaksha and Chandrashekara HM

DNA vaccination, or genetic immunization, is showing increasing promise in the novel vaccine technology that has great potential for reducing infectiousdisease and cancer-induced morbidity andmortalityworldwide. DNA vaccines have been used to stimulate protective immunity against many infectious pathogens, malignancies, and autoimmune disorders in animal models. The backbone of a DNA vaccine vector could be further modified to enhance immunogenicity via the manipulation of the DNA to include certain sequences, so that the DNA itself will have an adjuvantising effect. An immune response, which is mediated by the cellular and/or humoral arms of the immune system and is specific for the plasmid-encoded antigen, ensues. “Professional” Antigen-Presenting Cells (APCs) play a dominant role in the induction of immunity by presenting vaccine peptides on MHC class I molecules[1] to the cytotoxic T lymphocytes, following direct transfection or “cross”-presentation or priming and MHC class II molecules after antigen capture and processing within the endocytic pathway and presented to the CD4+ helper T cell and activates the homoral arms.

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