Vaxart has announced positive safety and immunogenicity data from phase I clinical studies with its tablet-form H1N1 seasonal influenza vaccine candidate. The announcement raises hopes for a simple, painless and user-friendly method for administering flu vaccines in the future.
The San Francisco-based biotechnology company says the oral vaccine generated serum anti-haemagglutinin (anti-HA) antibody responses and influenza HA-specific T-cell responses in 75-80% of participants. Neutralizing antibody levels were increased in 65% of subjects, with 35% of subjects fully seroconverting.
"These studies show that we are closing in on an effective influenza vaccine that is administered using a simple, user-friendly tablet," said Vaxart CEO Wouter Latour, MD. "Our vaccine tablets can be kept at room temperature for more than six months, greatly simplifying the logistics of annual flu vaccination campaigns. In the event of a pandemic, the Vaxart tablet vaccine could even be distributed by mail for self-administration at home. We are eager to make these public health benefits a reality."
The ethos of Vaxart is to develop vaccines as convenient tablets rather than injections. The company says it will now evaluate the tablet H1N1 influenza vaccine in a follow-on phase Ib trial, and will also accelerate the development of oral vaccines for H3N2 and two influenza B-strains.
What do you think? Do you think influenza vaccines administered as tablets have the potential to transform the global influenza vaccine market? You can leave a comment in the box below, or on LinkedIn group discussion. Want more from Vaccine Nation? Sign up to our newsletter for free here.
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