GenScript responds to H7N9 Avian Flu

GenScript was the fastest biotech company to complete a synthetic key to the H7N9-related gene on April 5, four days after hearing of the avian flu.

GenScript used their Rush Gene Synthesis Service, which accelerates the processing of research for the creation of flu-related genes. Certain parts of an influenza gene always remain the same, so the creation of a synthetic vaccine requires constructing those variations on an existing influenza template, according to experts.

The World Health Organization recently reported three cases of Avian Influenza A, H7N9, infections in China. These were the first reports of the virus having been transmitted to humans.

The virus initially was found to be present in wild bird populations, but after having been transmitted to domesticated birds in China, people have also begun contracting the virus. It is presently not known if the disease is able to be transmitted from human-to-human.

The Center for Disease Control has released information that the development of a vaccine for the virus is underway. China posted information about the genetic makeup of the virus on public resources, allowing pharmaceutical companies to synthetically produce the H7N9 strand.

GenScript said the best way to prevent the spread of disease is preparation to protect people against disease.