A Long Island drug maker named Codagenix has been given the green flag to commence human trials for its promising nasal drop vaccine against the novel coronavirus.
To be administered through simple nose drops, the Codagenix vaccine has received regulatory approval in the UK to start phase 1 testing, with 48 volunteers to start getting the treatment from the first week of January. “The potential of COVI-VAC to meet the global demand as a single-dose, needle-free vaccine that needs only a standard freezer or fridge cannot be overstated,” said Codagenix’s CEO, J. Robert Coleman.
Partnering with the Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd, the company announced that a Phase 1 clinical trial of COVI-VAC received regulatory approval by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency and has commenced in London, UK. COVI-VAC is a single-dose intranasal, live attenuated vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, that was shown to be safe and efficacious in preclinical animal studies.
COVI-VAC was developed with Codagenix’s Synthetic Attenuated Virus Engineering (SAVE) platform that uses synthetic biology to re-code the genes of viruses into safe and stable vaccines. Live attenuated vaccines — such as the MMR jab — work by stimulating the immune system in the same way that real disease would, but by relying on viruses unable to cause severe illness.
The vaccine is designed to deliver a safe, live attenuated version of SARS-CoV-2 that may induce a more robust immune response and long-lasting cellular immunity against SARS-CoV-2 compared to other vaccines against the virus.
Also compared to other vaccines, the candidate does not require a syringe or a second dose weeks later, nor does it need to be stored at 94 degrees below zero. COVI-VAC can be manufactured at a large scale and supports ease of administration in a mass vaccination campaign.
Codagenix is a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing prophylactic vaccines and oncolytic virus therapies. The company’s breakthrough Synthetic Attenuated Virus Engineering (SAVE) platform utilizes a computer algorithm to recode the genomes of viruses and construct live-attenuated vaccines to prevent viral infections or treat solid tumors. The vaccine is likely to be trialed at a 24-bed clinic in Whitechapel, East London, where participants will be quarantined.