Rational Drug Design

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Introduction
Rational drug design is a process essentially finding out how an infective agent works against a cell and using that information to design a drug that prevents the infective agent from being able to do what it does. Influenza viruses are continually changing into new strains. The proteins in their outer layer change continually. Our bodies learn to defend against one influenza virus, but the next time we are infected with an influenza virus it is different from the previous one and we develop influenza again, and again. This not only effects our health but has a huge economic impact due to reduced productivity. Within the past few decades, the time and cost of drug development have soared. Today it typically takes about 15 years and costs up to $800 million to convert a promising new compound into a drug on the market. Those costs reflect the complexity of the process History and background

Infection affects up to 500 million people each year.
For high-risk groups, complications from influenza can be fatal, with approximately 1500 deaths in Australia each year attributed to the infection. Influenza viruses are continually changing into new strains. The proteins in their outer layer change continually. Our bodies learn to defend against one influenza virus, but the next time we are infected with an influenza virus it is different from the previous one and we develop influenza again, and again. In Australia the influenza vaccine is updated every year. Having an influenza vaccine every year in Autumn is recommended. Protection develops about two weeks after being given the injection and lasts up to a year. Influenza vaccines are an injection containing killed influenza virus components, salt water, trace amounts of an antibiotic and a preservative. They are cultivated in embryonic hens eggs. Influenza vaccine is strongly recommended and free for:

everyone aged 65 years and older
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 15 years...
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