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Genetic Engineering

GM Carrots Contain Hepatitis B Vaccine

17 years, 2 months ago

3264  0
Posted on Sep 22, 2002, 12 p.m. By Bill Freeman

Researchers at a German university have genetically modified carrots to contain a vaccine against the potentially deadly liver disease hepatitis B. The current hepatitis B vaccine is expensive to produce and is administered via three injections, thus making it a time consuming and resource draining process.

Researchers at a German university have genetically modified carrots to contain a vaccine against the potentially deadly liver disease hepatitis B. The current hepatitis B vaccine is expensive to produce and is administered via three injections, thus making it a time consuming and resource draining process. The researchers say they can produce roughly 100,000 vaccine-containing plants in two weeks, which are ready to eat within just three months. Carrots grow well in many different climates, thus meaning that they can be grown where they are needed. Thus, removing costs usually associated with vaccination such as transportation, refrigeration, and the need of medical staff to administer the vaccine. Pre-clinical trials of the vaccine are set to get underway soon, and the researchers estimate that the carrot-based vaccine could be on the market by 2005. An estimated one million people die from hepatitis B each year.

SOURCE/REFERENCE: Reported by www.reutershealth.com on the 10th May 2002

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