(Image credit: Duke University Collier Lab) (Image credit: Duke University Collier Lab)

Self-Assembling Nanofibers Could Improve Nasal-Based Vaccine Delivery


The new platform provides potential for more effective vaccines with fewer side effects.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is shining a bright spotlight on vaccine development. As numerous vaccines race through clinical trials, physicians and researchers continue to work on developing new vaccine technologies to generate the most effective vaccines with the fewest side effects. A new proof-of-concept study by researchers at the University of Chicago and Duke University demonstrates the potential for one such platform, using self-assembling peptide nanofibers tagged with antigens to prime the immune system against a potential invasion.

“We don’t know yet which antigens will be most maximally protective against COVID-19,” said Collier. “This would let us very precisely target and produce antibodies and T cells that will provide the most protection.”

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The research indicates that nanofibers can induce an immune response and activate T cells without the use of additional adjuvant material designed to help the body to produce a strong immune response, which can induce inflammation. The vaccine may be delivered without needles. Tech Scouts should please view the Duke Office of Technology Licensing page and also check out this and other research in the Duke and University of Chicago multidisciplinary collaboration by exploring the map below.