Vaccines save about 2.5 million lives every year; highly effective vaccines against variable pathogens such as dengue virus (DENV) could double this number. Dengue is the most rapidly spreading mosquito-borne viral disease in the world and there are currently no licensed vaccines to prevent dengue infection. Scientists at the Nuffield Department of Medicine, led by Prof Arturo Reyes-Sandoval from The Jenner Institute, are developing a DENV vaccine to protect against all serotypes. A consortium between Mexican and UK-based scientists are joining efforts to participate in the vaccine development and assess the responses elicited by the DENV vaccine antigen in samples from infected volunteers.
The first NDM-Mexico Collaborative Project Training Workshop on Isolation and Preservation of Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells for Analysis of Antigen-Reactive T-Cell Responses, funded by a CONACyT-British Council/Newton Fund Institutional Links grant awarded to NDM and ITESM Campus Cd de Mexico, will take place at the Nuffield Department of Medicine, University of Oxford, from the 29 June to 9 July 2015 (and 13-22 July).
During the Workshop, 12 Mexican scientists from four different Mexican research and public health institutions, including the BUAP, UMSNH, ITESM and LESPM, will be provided with training on isolation, processing and preservation of mononuclear cells to perform studies of cellular immune responses in humans against dengue virus (DENV) to inform a novel vaccine development in work practices and techniques which are not available in Mexico. The intensive training workshop will last two weeks, and will be provided by Professor Arturo Reyes-Sandoval, Professor Lucy Dorrell and postdoctoral research scientists Dr Cesar López-Camacho, Dr Gemma Hancock and Dr Emma Ghaffari, from The Jenner Institute, Nuffield Department of Medicine.
The Mexican research team will have the opportunity to learn state-of-the-art techniques to assess cellular immune responses, used on a daily basis in Oxford for clinical and field trials. In addition, this team will be able to learn, understand and participate in the process of vaccine development from bench to clinic, which is well established in Oxford.
The CONACyT-British Council/Newton Fund Institutional Links project will cover the costs of return airfare, transportation and accommodation for all participants in Oxford for two weeks.