Medicago has announced that it is "first in the world" to report positive interim results from a pre-clinical trial for an H7N9 Virus-Like Particle (VLP) vaccine candidate. The company reports that three micrograms of its H7 vaccine administered with and without adjuvant induced high antibody titres after one dose.
According to Andy Sheldon, President and CEO of Medicago, the results are very significant because they come against a background of general concern that H7 vaccines will be of low immunogenicity in humans. "To our knowledge, this is the first report of preclinical results for an H7 vaccine developed for the recent H7N9 virus, further demonstrating that Medicago is well positioned to be a first responder in the face of a pandemic,” he said.
The plant-made H7N9 vaccine was developed for the H7N9 virus that is responsible for the recent influenza outbreak in China that killed 37 of the 133 reported cases as of May 29, 2013. In order to produce the vaccine, Medicago say they only require the genetic sequence of the viral strain, and thus this dramatically reduces the delays that occur using traditional manufacturing systems.
If you want to know more about strategy and innovation in vaccines, you might be interested in attending the World Vaccine Congress Europe 2013, 16-17 October 2013, Lille.