A California-based biotech company called Vaxart, known to have developed several oral vaccines as opposed to syringes, has now entered the first stage of clinical trials for the prospective COVID-19 vaccine. Vaxart has partnered with Kindred BioSciences, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company to manufacture the drug.

Having successfully received the Investigational Drug Clearance, followed by a clearance by the Food and Drug Administration the company has begun with Phase 1 trials this month. In a statement this week, Vaxart claimed that the first subject had received a dose of the VXA-CoV2-1 oral tablet in Phase 1 clinical trials. The first oral tablet in the race towards finding Coronavirus vaccines, this medicine will not only be cheaper, easier to take and administer but will also be a great alternative for those who are mortified by syringes. 

Source: Stat

This being said, the oral mode of the vaccine will also sport better accessibility and mobility, especially since it does not involve any pre-requisites of being transported or kept in refrigerated units.  

As of now, the ongoing trial has enrolled 48 healthy adults between the ages of 18 and 54 years old. The participants will receive a low or high dose of VXA-CoV2-1 on day 1 and again on day 29. The safety and immunogenicity of the drug will be evaluated for approximately two months, and again during a 12-month follow-up period.

Speaking about the progress and possible benefits of the vaccine, Andrew Floroiu, Vaxart’s chief executive officer, said in a news release, “We are very excited about our oral tablet vaccine entering the clinic because we believe that the COVID-19 pandemic needs an oral alternative to injectable vaccines. Our temperature stable oral tablet vaccine has the potential to ease many of the problems associated with the distribution and administration of cold chain-dependent injectable vaccines and may make herd immunity more achievable by making it much easier to vaccine more people faster. We are looking forward to receiving the first clinical data in the next few weeks.”

Source: European Pharmaceutical Review

Also sporting an upper-hand in production, Vaxart has claimed that its approach, in particular, ensures a high-yielding, efficient and standardized manufacturing that can better tackle mass-production as compared to syringe-based vaccines. 

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Rhea Sovani

Author Rhea Sovani

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