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2021-09-09| Asia-Pacific

This Australian Biotech is Developing a Nanocellular COVID-19 Vaccine for the Immunocompromised

by Tyler Chen
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The so-called world’s-first nanocellular COVID-19 vaccine will begin dosing in a Phase 1 clinical trial in Melbourne on September 7. The vaccine, COVID-19-EDV, is developed by Australian biotech EnGeneIC with the firm’s proprietary nano-cell technology platform (EnGeneIC Dream Vector, EDV). The immune readouts are expected to be released 1 month and 3 months after dosing.

Neutralize Variants of Concern, Including Delta

COVID-19-EDV is designed for people who are immunocompromised such as patients with cancer or autoimmune diseases and the elderly, making it the first vaccine for these patient groups out there. The vaccine has shown promising results in animal trials. It can completely neutralize the Alpha, Beta, and Gamma variants, and neutralize the Delta variant at more than 95%.

The Secret Lies in Nano-Cell Tech

The vector (EDV) used for the vaccine contains 3 molecules. One of them can produce the spike proteins of the COVID-19 virus in the nano-cell and deliver a strong immune response; another molecule can activate important cells in the immune system to fight viruses; the last one can generate antibodies with high affinity to target the virus variant. EDVs are also used in clinical trials to treat late-stage cancer patients, and could raise immune responses even in patients with a weakened immune system. 

Possible for Storage at Room Temperature for 3 Years

With all the COVID-19 vaccines out there, COVID-19-EDV outshines them with the ability to store under room temperature for 3 years, despite not having any chemical additives or stabilizers. As the Phase 1 trial commences in Melbourne, EnGeneIC is planning to further the vaccine’s clinical progress with another efficacy trial in the US.

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