OSLO, Norway–(BUSINESS WIRE)–CEPI, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, and Vaxxas, a medical biotechnology company that markets a new vaccine platform, have signed a collaboration agreement to advance the development of Vaxxas’ needle-free vaccine delivery technology in the project. which may eliminate the need for cryopreservation of mRNA vaccines. CEPI will fund $4.3 million (AUD6.4 million) in preclinical testing of Vaxxas’ needle-free, high-density microarray patch (HD-MAP) platform to assess its stability, safety and immunogenicity and explore potential as a rapid response technology for mRNA vaccines immovable, dry.
This project is the first to be announced as part of CEPI’s call for proposals in January 2022, which aims to improve the temperature of—and thus improve access to—various vaccine platforms. This call is part of CEPI’s mission to use new technologies to improve the speed, scale and accessibility of vaccine discovery and production to combat epidemics and pandemic threats.
The possibility of needle-free vaccination
HD-MAPs are made up of thousands of particles that are connected by a small patch. Each of these small amounts contains a small amount of vaccine that is made into a powder. When the patch is applied to the skin, it immunizes the immune cells under the skin.
The HD-MAP vaccine offers many advantages over traditional vaccination methods. For example, dry forms of vaccines are more stable at high temperatures than vaccines in liquid formulations. Vaxxas’ HD-MAPs have proven safe and tolerable in hundreds of participants to date, and have been shown to induce similar or greater immune responses to vaccines at lower doses. Compared to needle and syringe machines, they are also easier to use and more acceptable.
Ultimately, HD-MAP patches could enable a future where vaccines can be delivered to people’s homes, workplaces and schools, avoiding the delays and disruption of the needle and syringe vaccination system.
Providing access to vaccines
CEPI and Vaxxas are committed to facilitating global access to the vaccines they develop including those incorporating patch technology. Under the funding agreement, Vaxxas is committed to equal access to the project’s outcomes including prioritizing resources for low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs), developing the necessary vaccines to meet public health needs, at affordable prices, and adoption technology for LMIC producers in line with CEPI’s Equitable Access Policy.
Jane Halton, Chair of CEPI, said: “As we have witnessed with COVID-19, access to vaccines must be at the heart of any pandemic response. This is a guiding principle for all of CEPI’s investments. Combining Vaxxas’s vaccine-patch technology with the speed and power of mRNA vaccines may provide a tool that not only has a rapid response to be used against unknown pathogens, but could also be an additional means of providing life-saving vaccines to the most vulnerable populations around the world.”
Richard Hatchett, CEO of CEPI, said: “Advances in mRNA vaccine technology were critical to the global response to COVID-19. One of the biggest challenges the world faced in getting these life-saving vaccines to vulnerable populations was the need to store them at very high temperatures . One way to improve the access to mRNA vaccines in the future would be to change the structure so that they can be delivered using small patches. This eliminates the need for ice storage, allows easy distribution and safe delivery with accurate dosing. These characteristics make this technology promising as a platform. for rapid vaccination in case of emergency, especially in hard-to-reach areas.”
David Hoey, Chief Executive Officer of Vaxxas, said: “Getting this significant investment from one of the world’s leaders in vaccine development is a great opportunity, and it confirms the benefits offered by Vaxxas’ HD-MAP vaccine platform in the fight against global pandemic. threats. In addition to providing access to life-saving vaccines for infectious diseases that affect high-risk populations around the world, the development of a high-throughput HD-MAP mRNA vaccine will also be of great benefit to Vaxxas’ development.” several, including Covid-19.”
CEPI is a new partnership between public, private, humanitarian, and public organizations, established in 2017, to develop vaccines against future epidemics. Its goal is to accelerate the development of vaccines and other methods of combating diseases and epidemics so that they can be made available to all people in need.
Before COVID-19, CEPI’s work focused on developing vaccines against Ebola virus, Lassa virus, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus, Nipah virus, Rift Valley Fever virus and Chikungunya virus – it has more than 20 vaccine candidates against pathogens. CEPI has also invested in new platform technologies to rapidly develop vaccines against pathogens (Disease X).
CEPI has played a major role in the global response to COVID-19, supporting the development of the world’s largest vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 and its variants that focus on speed, growth and opportunity, and leading the way. COVAX, a global initiative to provide fair and equitable access to the COVID-19 vaccine. CEPI is also the world’s leading funder of R&D for highly protective coronavirus vaccines that may protect against future strains of COVID-19 as well as other pandemic and pandemic coronaviruses.
CEPI has launched a five-year US$3.5bn plan – called CEPI 2.0 – to reduce or eliminate the risk of epidemics and epidemics. Central to the plan is CEPI’s goal – supported by the G7 and G20 – to squeeze the time taken to develop a safe, effective, universally available vaccine against new threats to just 100 days. Accomplishing this ‘100 Day Task’ would give the world a chance to fight the future pandemic before it becomes a global pandemic. Read the plan endpandemics.cepi.net/
Vaxxas is a privately held biotechnology company focused on improving the efficacy of existing and next-generation vaccines with a proprietary high-density microarray patch (HD-MAP). Vaxxas is looking for early applications in infectious diseases and oncology.
In addition to the Phase I clinical study of the vaccine for COVID-19, Vaxxas is conducting clinical trials in collaboration with the United States Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) on pandemic vaccine solutions.
Vaxxas’ core technology was originally developed at The University of Queensland (UQ), and the company was launched as a start-up in 2011 by UQ’s marketing company UniQuest. The company was founded with the completion of seed funding led by OneVentures Innovation Fund I and partners Brandon Capital Partners, Brandon BioCatalyst, and US-based HealthCare Ventures, followed by other investments led by OneVentures. OneVentures Innovation Fund I and Brandon BioCatalyst are supported by the Australian Government’s Innovation Investment Fund (IIF) program. The IIF is the Australian Government’s financial instrument that provides investment capital and management expertise through licensed investment fund managers to investment companies. Learn more at www.one-ventures.com and www.brandoncapital.vc.