UCF Scientist to Develop New Polio Vaccine

ORLANDO - A University of Central Florida scientist is getting $760,000 from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a new polio vaccine. He hopes it will be a cheaper, better alternative to the vaccines already on the market. [audio:http://eunalhee.com/wp-content/uploads/Lhee_poliovaccine.mp3|titles=poliovaccine|artists=Lhee]

For the past 10 years, UCF researcher Henry Daniell has been working to make vaccines from leafy green lettuce and tobacco plants.

Now with this two-year grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, he plans to create an oral polio vaccine that can be stored at room temperature. He thinks putting the vaccine into pill form will make it more effective and accessible to the developing world, where polio is making a comeback.

"So Gates wants a cheaper technology so that remote villages can have this," Daniell said. "And the pill is more effective than the injectable vaccine."

Daniell also hopes to produce oral vaccines for other infectious diseases, like malaria, cholera and dengue fever. [HealthyState.org | FPR Spot]