Universal Streptococcus Pneumoniae Vaccine Design via Gene Cusotmization

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J. Robert Coleman, Lisa M. Runco

SUNY - Farmingdale State Colle, United States

Our work focuses on the application of rational gene design for vaccine construction. We have built upon our synthetically-modified and attenuated Streptococcus pneumonia (SP] strain and have begun explore how synthetic gene design can allow this strain to serve as a universal SP vaccine. The need for an improved SP vaccine is to overcome the emerging clinical phenomenon know as serotype replacement (STR). STR is associated with pulmonary and invasive infections by SP. SP has a total of 92 serotypes; however, only 13 or 23 of these serotypes are covered in the current pediatric or adult vaccines, respectively. STR is the growing emergence of SP serotypes not covered by currently utilized anti-SP vaccines, becoming the major cause of pneumonia and other complications from a SP infection. Our work has used rational gene design to over-express what we refer to as ‘common protective proteins’ to construct a universal pneumococcal vaccine, capable of protecting against all 92 serotypes of SP. Given the threat posed by STR, there is a direct need for the development of a vaccine that confers immunity to all serotypes