IS THERE A BETTER WAY OF MAKING A FLU VACCINE?
Cell.-based vaccine first began in the eggs, and it had similar issues to the standard vaccine in 2016 -2017season. Beginning in 2018, U.S developed a cell-based vaccine that scientists only grew in animal cells. It will still require the gathering of more analytical data at the end of flu season, but this vaccine might be the most effective than the originating egg vaccine because it does not have challenges of mutation.
It could in future be a much better way of making flu vaccine. It is also faster because it does not require the gathering of fresh eggs every season. Animal cells are useful to use for many seasons after freezing during the off-season and thwacking them when needed.
WHY CELL-BASED FLU VACCINE IS BETTER THAN STANDARD EGG-CELL SHOTS
Most of the flu shots developers grow them inside egg cells. Eggs provide a suitable home for replicating the viruses and simple to work with because they have been in use for many years. People with egg allergies get a different shot. Everyone else except this small subpopulation has been thinking that the production of the vaccines follows an acceptable method. The recent research suggests viruses that grow in the eggs undergo a crucial change that makes resulting vaccines less effective.
Human bodies identification of flu is based on a crucial part of a virus called hemagglutinin. HA isan antigen and the bit of the virus that immune cells can bind to. A vaccine trains the immune system to identify specific antigens by growing a virus inside the living cells, inactivating it and collecting antigens. The immune system becomes ready to fight the infection off if you contract a virus because these antigens are similar to those in the shot. You must rump up the defense further if the antigens are different as it allows a virus to have time for taking over the body.
HA mutates when the H3N2 strain of flu grows in eggs to allow better replication by the virus in its new environment. This method confirms that laboratories are producing flu vaccine base it on a mutated version of the virus. Later observation of the flu in circulation and comparing it to reference that developers used for vaccine might show like they got it right. Nonetheless, the reality is that a lab starts with a virus that is not the same to that which finally goes into the shot. Prediction of the strains might be right but the efficiency even at this time is 40-60 per cent.
The differences explain why the flu strains might mutate the same way in egg cells but H3N2 is often a predominant strain. The use mutations in H3N2 strain for vaccine explains situations like that of Australia having a vaccine with 10 per cent efficiency and an awful flu season.
Cell-based flu vaccine technology has been using for a while although many pharmaceutical companies are hesitant to change because a fundamental change in manufacturing vaccines is expensive. The demand is also still lower, but if it turns out to be a better vaccine, pharmaceutical companies will have a motivation to change to non-egg vaccine option.