• By Dana Sparks

Why Does Smallpox Vaccine Shield Only Some? It’s in the Genes

April 15, 2013

How well people are protected by the smallpox vaccine depends on more than the quality of the vaccination. Mayo Clinic research shows individual genes can alter their response.

Senior author Gregory Poland, M.D., director of the Mayo Clinic Vaccine Research Group, says, “We were looking into the intercellular reactions that occur when vaccinated and unvaccinated persons are exposed to and infected with smallpox virus. We were able to use blood samples taken directly from vaccinated patients.We could see what would happen based on exposing a mixed-cell peripheral blood cell population to the vaccinia virus.”

The findings, gathered using sophisticated genomic screening, will appear in the online issue of the journal Genes & Immunity.

Click here to read news release.

Sound bites with Dr. Poland are available in the downloads

Expert title for broadcast cg: Dr. Gregory Poland, Mayo Clinic Infectious Diseases

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