“Two scientists are locked in a race to develop a groundbreaking vaccine for heroin. But many addiction experts and health officials warn that the medicine is unlikely to be the end game for the current opioid crisis and is a decade from reaching the market, at the earliest.
Dr. Kim Janda, a chemist at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, has been developing vaccines targeting addictive substances for nearly 30 years and has pioneered much of the research in the field. He began developing the heroin vaccine about a decade ago and in recent years has begun work on a vaccine for fentanyl, a painkiller 50 times more powerful than heroin and the cause of an increasing number of overdose deaths.
His competitor, Dr. Gary Matyas, has been developing his vaccine since 2011 at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Maryland, a facility run by the Department of Defense. Matyas’ work largely builds on Janda’s and grew out of a research push to develop a vaccine for HIV — his vaccine has since become a combination heroin and HIV vaccine. So far, both Janda’s and Matyas’ vaccines have been tested only in animals.”
Source: BusinessInsider.com – September 9, 2017