ConserV and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to collaborate on coronavirus vaccine
ConserV Bioscience, a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on developing vaccines that protect against endemic and emergent infectious diseases, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) are to collaborate on the development of a broad-spectrum coronavirus vaccine.
The collaboration combines ConserV’s expertise in identifying antigens and LLNL’s nanolipoprotein particle technology (NLP) delivery system. The vaccine has been designed to provide broad-spectrum protection against coronavirus pathogens of human and animal origin, including but not limited to MERS, SARS and SARS-CoV-2.
The vaccine construct consists of conserved immunoreactive regions from external and internal coronavirus proteins, from each virus genus, encoded in messenger RNA (mRNA). The mRNA constructs will be formulated with LLNL’s proprietary NLP vehicle prior to injection, allowing freeze-drying of both components separately, improving storage and transport conditions required compared to other mRNA vaccine products.
Vaccine formulation was funded by the UK’s Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) through a Small Business Research Initiative programme managed by Innovate UK.
The objective of the collaboration is to demonstrate the immunogenicity and protective responses in pre-clinical studies which will support initiation of clinical studies as soon as feasible thereafter.
ConserV has a pipeline of eight vaccines at various stages of pre-clinical and clinical development, including a broad-spectrum flu vaccine that is set to enter Phase III trials, and a novel mosquito saliva vaccine that aims to protect against all mosquito-borne diseases that is ready to enter Phase II trials.
Kimbell Duncan, CEO of ConserV Bioscience, commented: “Our mission is to develop safe and effective vaccines which offer broad protection against infections from viruses that mutate frequently. We are pleased to be working with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to develop our broad-spectrum coronavirus vaccine candidate.
“We have identified regions within the proteins of the virus that are not susceptible to change and, if effective, the vaccine promises to protect against a broad spectrum of current circulating coronavirus strains and future emergent ones.”
Amy Rasley, Senior Scientist Immunology and Vaccines at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, added: “We look forward to combining our nanolipoprotein particle technology with ConserV’s mRNA construct encoding conserved viral epitopes. We hope to advance the vaccine candidate to human trials as quickly as possible.”
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