New Delhi | Jagran Lifestyle Desk: In a significant development on the vaccine development front, scientists have redesigned a key protein from the novel Coronavirus which it uses to infect the human cells. 

The researchers, including those from the University of Texas at Austin in the US, say that most COVID-19 potential vaccines train the human immune system to recognise a key protein on the surface, called spike protein on the surface of SARS-CoV-2.

A study published in ‘The Science’ journal, says that a new version of spike protein has been developed artificially that can reportedly produce up to ten times more in the cells as compared to the currently in use artificial spike protein version across the various potential vaccine candidates being developed all over the world.

"Depending on the type of vaccine, this improved version of the protein could reduce the size of each dose or speed up vaccine production," Jason McLellan, one of the authors of the study from the University of Texas at Austin was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

The study suggests that the new protein, nicknamed as HexaPro, among another positive response observed, is also more stable than its previous counterparts being put in experimental use across the world for potential COVID-19 vaccines.

HexaPro can also be used in COVID-19 antibody tests, the research says, where it would act as a probe to identify the presence of antibodies in a person's blood, pointing out whether a person has previously been infected with the virus. This is the methodology largely adopted in big-scale Serology surveys, like the ones recently released for the cities of Delhi and Mumbai in India.

"High-yield production of a stabilised prefusion spike protein will accelerate the development of vaccines and serological diagnostics for SARS-CoV-2," the scientists wrote in the study published in ‘The Science’ journal.

Posted By: Talib Khan