NESS ZIONA, Israel, September 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --
BiondVax Pharmaceuticals Ltd. (NASDAQ: BVXV) announced today that the last participant in a European Phase 2b clinical trial of M-001, its universal flu vaccine candidate, has completed their final visit. Conducted in collaboration with the EU-sponsored UNISEC consortium, the trial is designed to evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of M-001 when used ahead of a pandemic influenza vaccine.
"This important milestone marks the conclusion of the patient facing part of our European trial. Laboratory analysis is now underway, and we look forward to the results in the coming months. The conclusion of this trial, along with the upcoming start of our NIH-sponsored Phase 2 trial in the USA, means we are on track to be Phase 3 ready in the 2017/18 timeframe. We are excited to be one step closer to bringing our multi-strain and multi-season vaccine against seasonal and pandemic flu to the market," explained BiondVax's Chief Scientist, Dr. Tamar Ben-Yedidia.
In 2009, following the official World Health Organization (WHO) declaration of a H1N1 swine flu pandemic, it took about 6 months until vaccines against the new strain could be administered. During those 6 months the pandemic proliferated, ultimately killing up to 575,000 people globally. The long delay is attributable to current egg-based manufacturing processes and the need for the new vaccine to be highly specific to the new pandemic flu strain.
To mitigate against the 6-month delay some authorities currently stockpile pandemic flu vaccines. For example, under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Pandemic Influenza Plan, one of the key goals for vaccine preparedness is to "stockpile vaccines against influenza viruses with pandemic potential to cover 20 million persons."
However, given current flu vaccine technology, each different flu strain requires its own specific vaccine. As well, there is an unlimited number of potential future flu strains. BiondVax's flu vaccine, M-001, is advantageous in that it is designed to provide protection against a broad range of current and future potential flu strains.
The current trial in Europe is designed to compare humoral and cellular immune response between two groups. These are (1) a control group receiving the standard avian pandemic vaccine alone, and (2) a group receiving BiondVax's M-001 as a primer prior to receiving the pandemic vaccine.
The goal following its approval for use as a pandemic primer would be to administer stockpiled M-001 immediately upon declaration of any new pandemic, thereby providing broad flu protection until a virus-specific vaccine is produced a few months later. BiondVax's long-term intent is to license M-001 as a standalone universal flu vaccine, replacing both the current seasonal and pandemic vaccine technology.
- http://www.cdc.gov/flu/spotlights/pandemic-global-estimates.htm, retrieved 19 Sept 2016.
- https://www.medicalcountermeasures.gov/barda/pandemic-influenza.aspx, retrieved 19 Sept 2016.
About BiondVax Pharmaceuticals Ltd
BiondVax is a clinical phase biopharmaceutical company developing a universal flu vaccine. The vaccine is designed to provide multi-season protection against most seasonal and pandemic human influenza virus strains. BiondVax's proprietary technology utilizes a unique combination of conserved and common peptides from influenza virus proteins, activating both arms of the immune system for a cross-protecting and long-lasting effect. BiondVax is traded on NASDAQ: BVXV and TASE: BVXV. Please visit http://www.biondvax.com.
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SOURCE BiondVax Pharmaceuticals Ltd.