A shot for the heart

Published: Tuesday 15 November 1994

A recurring throat infection with the streptococci bacteria can cause rheumatic heart disease. Now, scientist Sumalee Prukksakorn at the Queensland Institute of Medical Research and colleagues have identified a small portion of a protein, dubbed the M protein, from the bacteria, which could be used as a vaccine (The Lancet, Vol 344, No 8923).

The scientists have synthesised the effective portion of the protein and have found that people tested with the vaccine produced antibodies -- chemicals in the blood that can destroy the offending bacteria.

Subscribe to Daily Newsletter :

Comments are moderated and will be published only after the site moderator’s approval. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name. Selected comments may also be used in the ‘Letters’ section of the Down To Earth print edition.