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InVitria at the American Association of Immunologists 2018 Conference

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This year at the American Association of Immunologists 2018 Conference in Austin, Texas, I had the pleasure of meeting some of the field’s brightest scientists deep in my home town. While enjoying only a small sample of blues, rock, country music and some Texas-authentic Tex-Mex that the live music capital of the world has to offer, I was able to catch up on some of the latest developments in the field, network with colleagues, and speak with scientists presenting their latest research. 

Held in the vast spaces of the Austin Convention Center, AAI 2018 boasted over 200 exhibitors, 1300 posters, and countless talks that covered topics from infectious disease to cancer immunotherapy. With InVitria’s portfolio of chemically defined blood-free components, supplements, and complete media, I was anxious to see if these reagents could serve as tools to facilitate the research being presented and so I spent most of my time combing the countless rows of posters and engaging the scientists presenting them.

Infectious Diseases in the Spotlight

The USAMIIRD presented research on the cytokine and chemokine profiles of a human response model of Ebola. Further, the CDC Atlanta has investigated the role of activated macrophages in the progression of the Ebola virus infection. Further, the Scripps Research Institute examined the Memory T cell response in survivors of the 2013-2016 African Ebola epidemic. This research becomes crucially important as a new outbreak has emerged in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Given the especially severe flu season this year, research centering around the immune mechanisms and novel treatment strategies for flu were plentiful. The University of Washington presented novel findings centered around dendritic cell function and protective immunity against the flu virus. Further, the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation found a role of dendritic cells in the production of regulatory cytokines TGF-β and IL-10 during influenza infection.    

Finally, with the summer months just around the corner, the concern for another Zika outbreak has come to the forefront. Tetracore presented research around the validation of a fluorescent microsphere multiplex serology assay for the differential diagnosis of Zika. Further, the Washington University School of Medicine showed data that described the underlying mechanisms of Zika Virus antibody-mediated neutralization.

Cell Culture Media to the Rescue

In learning about these novel research projects, it became clear that the work of these researchers could benefit from the utilization of high quality reagents. Utilization of reagents, such as cell culture media, with undefined components runs the risk of erroneous results and irreproducible data. InVitria has developed a chemically defined virus production media known as OptiVERO. This media has highlighted the ability to express virus types that have been shown not to be possible in media with undefined components.

Download the OptiVERO performance comparison poster

Thus, OptiVERO is a significant facilitator of not only the translation to more robust manufacturing methods for vaccines but also for research. OptiVERO can boost the confidence of developmental scientists at the bench. Since the media is chemically defined, OptiVERO has unrivaled reproducibility and can facilitate vaccine research through the minimization of cell culture variability. Taken together, OptiVERO represents a novel platform in the large-scale production of viral vaccines and an enabling technology to make new vaccines possible.

If you are a researcher working on developing a novel vaccine or viral-based research and want to improve the efficacy and safety of your product or reproducibility of your experimental system, give us a call at 1-800-916-8311 or get in touch on our website to discuss how we can help you meet those goals.
Randy Alfano

Written by Randy Alfano

Dr. Alfano joined InVitria in 2012 and currently leads the product development team, where he utilizes his expertise in media design and optimization for biomanufacturing and stem/primary cells. Prior to joining the company, Dr. Alfano was the Process Development Manager for XBiotech in Austin, TX where he specialized in the development and optimization of the company’s cell culture processes in mammalian cells for cancer biologics. Previously, he was promoted from Postdoctoral Fellow to Senior Scientist at the Cancer Research Institute of Scott and White Hospital where he developed in vivo animal models for metastatic prostate cancer and was instrumental in developing thorough in vitro and in vivo models for immunostimulatory antigens. Dr. Alfano received his Ph.D. from Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine.

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