Korean vaccine developers are rushing to develop a vaccine for the Omicron variant, which is likely to be the dominant variant in the country in a few months.

Democratic Party representatives Lee Kwang-jae and Shin Hyun-young held a meeting with local vaccine developer officials on Wednesday to share the industry’s latest plans to develop Covid-19 vaccines targeting Omicron.

Democratic Party Representative Shin Hyun-young (top center, pictured left) holds a meeting with pharmaceutical industry officials and government officials to share the industry’s plan to develop vaccines against Omicron. (Credit: “Shin Hyun-young TV” YouTube channel)

SK Bioscience, Cellid, Eyegene, EuBiologics and GeneOne Life Science are working on Covid-19 vaccines, specifically fighting the Omicron variant.

SK Bioscience said it plans to use the experimental Covid-19 vaccine GBP510 platform, tested in a Phase 3 study, to make a “universal vaccine” to prevent infection with Covid-19 and its variants .

The company began developing a vaccine targeting arboviruses with $ 50 million in support from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). Previously, SK Bioscience had received $ 210 million from CEPI for the development of £ 510. In total, the company will receive $ 260 million in funds from CEPI for the development of the Covid-19 vaccine.

The Sarbecovirus family includes variants of SARS, Covid-19 (SARS-Cov2), and Covid-19.

In other words, SK Bioscience aims to develop an effective vaccine against infections of the sarbecovirus family and their variants as a whole.

“We will actively take advantage of CEPI’s research support and cooperation with outside institutions to advance this plan,” said Cho Tae-jun, executive vice president of the R&D strategy and planning office at SK Bioscience.

According to Cho, the company synthesizes genes and produces and cultivates cell lines for each variant. “We will develop a vaccine to treat the variants and simultaneously work on a vaccine against sarbecovirus. “

“Support needed for mass production of Omicron vaccine”

Cellid and GeneOne Life Science are developing a two-dose vaccine to protect against the Omicron variant.

With a vaccine variant evaluation system using 19 types of pseudoviruses, Cellid plans to apply for a clinical trial of a candidate vaccine in late February or early March next year after evaluating its effectiveness.

Cellid CEO Kang Chang-yul said the recent establishment of the GMP plant in Seongnam, Gyeonggi Province, will speed up the company’s clinical trials.

“It is important for a small business to conduct a study, but it is also important to mass produce the vaccine and provide it to the public,” Kang said, asking for government support to help the company build a system. mass production of vaccines.

GeneOne Life Science also considers it possible to fight Omicron with GLS-5310, a Covid-19 DNA vaccine being tested in a phase 2 study.

The company confirmed that GLS-5310 eliminated the beta variant, first identified in South Africa, during a test on hamsters in October. Jeong Moon-sup, director of the R&D center at GeneOne Life Science, said Omicron’s peak antigen site was similar to the beta variant.

“The government should help get a comparative vaccine”

Eyegene and EuBiologics develop booster injection to curb the spread of Omicron.

Finding that the investigational Covid-19 EG-COVID vaccine is effective against Omicron, Eyegene recently began developing a booster injection in conjunction with AI-backed drug developer PharmCADD.

Eyegene will conduct a Phase 1 booster study in Australians who have completed the second dose of a Covid-19 vaccine from January next year.

The company said it will launch a Phase 1 / 2a study in Australia and South Africa in March.

EuBiologics, which commissioned a local Phase 3 study of the synthetic antigen EuCorVac-19 vaccine, also tested whether the vaccine was potent against Omicron.

EuBiologics CEO Baek Young-ok said EuCorVac-19 demonstrated the titer of neutralizing antibodies against Omicron in a study that used serum from patients who recovered from Covid-19, giving perspective positive.

Asked what kind of support EuBiologics will need to get approval for a clinical trial, Baek said they are getting a comparative vaccine.

Securing a licensed vaccine is essential because it can be compared to an investigational vaccine in a comparative immunogenicity study.

A comparative vaccine study takes less money and time than a placebo-controlled trial. The COVID-19 vaccination rate is high in Korea, so a comparative immunogenicity study is easier to recruit participants.

“To check the effect of the booster or the response to the variant, and to compare it to an existing vaccine, we need a comparative vaccine with government support,” Baek said.

Source link