Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have developed a technology that may enable the influenza B virus to be grown in mammalian cells rather than in eggs.
Growing vaccine viruses in high-yield cell culture should improve the ability of seasonal vaccines to protect against influenza A and B because vaccine viruses grown in mammalian cell culture are less likely to mutate compared to those grown in eggs. Mutations can lead to vaccine viruses that no longer match the intended strains of influenza.
“It may still not be perfect, but it will at least be substantially better than current vaccines,” says Kawaoka, who notes no one else has successfully tried to produce high-yield influenza B vaccine virus before now. Last year, his research team created a high-yield influenza A vaccine virus candidate for cell culture production.
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