Using electrons to inactivate viruses

More efficient vaccine production

Reserach News / 3.1.2017

Many vaccines contain viruses that are inactivated to prevent them from harming recipients. This is generally achieved by adding chemicals. Fraunhofer scientists are taking a different approach, using low-energy-electrons to irradiate the pathogens. The advantages of this new method are that it produces no toxic waste and provides a faster and less aggressive way of rendering pathogens inactive.

  • Viruses in many vaccines are inactivated by means of formaldehyde.
  • Scientists at four Fraunhofer Institutes have developed a new method that makes it easier to inactivate pathogens: low-energy electron irradiation.
  • The project is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.