The Scripps Research Institute - At The Forefront

October 2015

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Focus on:
Moving Toward a Universal Flu Vaccine

Each year, experts convene to determine the three or four flu subtypes most likely to appear in the U.S. that season so a vaccine can be designed against them. However, other subtypes can emerge rapidly – as was evident in the 2009 spread of the H1N1 ("swine flu") subtype that killed as many as 575,400 people worldwide.

Now, scientists from TSRI and the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies have discovered a way to induce antibodies to fight a wide range of influenza subtypes – a breakthrough that could one day eliminate the need for repeated seasonal flu shots.

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The team from The Scripps Research Institute and Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies designed a molecule that mimicked the shape of a key part of the influenza virus, inducing a powerful and broadly effective immune response in animal models.






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Scripps Research Institute Professor Kim Janda was co-author of the new paper.


milestones in medical science:
Can a Nicotine-Eating Bacteria Help Smokers Quit?

Existing patches, pills, therapies and other aids to help people quit smoking fail 80 to 90% of the time. But a new TSRI study shows that a bacterial enzyme that can destroy nicotine before it reaches the brain – depriving the person the "reward" of nicotine – might provide a new treatment to help people quit smoking.

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Ben Shen is a professor at the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute.


Other News:
How One Antibiotic Uses Sulfur Against Cancer

Sulfur is a critical component of most forms of life on earth, and it’s one of the most abundant elements in the human body. A number of compounds that contain sulfur have proven useful in the treatment of conditions ranging from acne and eczema to arthritis and cancer.

Now, in a discovery with implications for future drug design, a team from Scripps Florida, led by TSRI Professor Ben Shen, have discovered how a natural antibiotic with antitumor properties incorporates sulfur into its molecular structure – and how that is an essential ingredient in its tumor-fighting ability.

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Choosing Your Favorite Charity Over Uncle Sam

Did you know that your retirement plan could be subject to multiple taxes, which could reduce what you leave to your family by as much as 60%? Fortunately, there is a charitable alternative that can benefit both your family and TSRI. Make us the beneficiary of all or part of your retirement plan, and any remaining balance will come to us tax-free. Then, you can leave other assets not subject to so many taxes (like cash, stock or real estate) to your heirs. We will receive a gift, and they will receive more from your estate. It’s a win-win for all involved. Learn more today.



facts & figures

The flu causes more than 200,000 hospitalizations and as many as 49,000 deaths each year in the United States, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.




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