Health unit to offer flu vaccination clinic


"We are encouraging everyone to get a flu shot to protect themselves and their families, because it is hard to predict in advance how severe the flu season is going to be this year". Now it is advancing into mid-stage Phase IIb testing, which will see the recruitment of at least 500 British subjects this season.

Insurance will be filed, or individuals may pay at check in: $36 or $70 for the high-dose vaccine (recommended option for those age 65 and older).

Researchers don't intend for this new vaccine to replace the current one.

Current flu vaccines have to be changed each year to match strains of virus circulating at the time and they do not always protect people that well, especially older patients with weak immune systems.

Most vaccines work by spurring the immune system to produce more antibodies tuned towards surface proteins found on the outside of the flu cell. Surface proteins stick out like pins from the virus and change all the time, while those in the core are stable.

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Usually, the flu jab is manufactured in the spring using strains of the virus that experts consider will be the most common in the following winter. They all got a dose of the 2014-2015 influenza vaccine.

With three classified types of influenza, A, B, and C, it is A and B viruses which cause the large outbreaks.

Check in for a flu shot will be on the second floor of the Winona clinic at 855 Mankato Avenue in Winona. "Healthy people can get very sick too, so you'll also be protecting yourself".

Crucially, the new vaccine stimulates the immune system to boost influenza-specific T-cells, instead of antibodies, that kill the virus as it tries to spread through the body.

About 10,000 over 65s registered at six GP practices will be asked to take part in the trial in Berkshire and Oxfordshire this winter.

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Half of the 500 volunteers will receive the usual seasonal flu jab and a placebo or dummy jab, while the other half with get the regular vaccine plus the new experimental one.

The so-called universal vaccine was developed by Oxford University's Jenner Institute and Vaccitech, a spin-out biotech company founded by Jenner scientists.

The world's first large-scale tests of the vaccine on humans, according to the National Institute for medical research, which supports this project. "We expect that the protection from the new vaccine will last longer than a year, but we will need to test that with more clinical trials in the future", she said.

"It is possible that, in future, vaccinations against flu might be given at longer intervals - maybe every five years instead of every year".

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