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Company Overview

A viral gene design algorithm that is unlike any first-generation vaccine platforms

Codagenix developed a viral gene customization algorithm that is unlike any first-generation vaccine platforms. We do not use an attenuated backbone virus carrying an antigen, virus-like particles (VLPs), or mRNAs expressing a single antigen. Those iterations of vaccine platforms are just that, “platforms,” or physical entities of some kind to which you can attach only 1 or 2 target antigens. Codagenix’s unique approach targets the Achilles heel of all viruses. In fact, The New England Journal of Medicine theorized that our approach could be applied to “any virus”. (Coffin 2008)

How our platform works

Every virus, whether it is influenza, zika, or the common cold, uses the host cell machinery (ribosome) to translate its genome and synthesize its proteins – how the genome is read by the ribosome is our algorithm’s point of attack/attenuation. The Codagenix computer algorithm re-codes and “deoptimizes” the codon pair bias/codon bias of viral genes – putting the genes in a language that is read slowly by the host cell ribosome. These deoptimized genes encode the same exact protein sequences as the wildtype but do so in a suboptimal fashion. Deoptimization results in a vast reduction of pathogenesis, yet induction of a potent immune response given the presentation of all perfectly matched antigens of the wild type virus, yielding a potent vaccine. Codagenix deoptimzed viruses are ideal for use as live-attenuated vaccines and given the re-coding and atypical RNA, robust oncolytics for solid tumors.

Company history

Codagenix Inc. spun out of the laboratory of National Academy of Science Member Eckard Wimmer at Stony Brook University in 2012. Dr. Wimmer was the first to synthesize a virus from scratch; this discovery serves as the core concept of Codagenix (Cello et al. Science 2002). The ability to synthesize viruses opens the door to rationally redesigning viral genomes to turn viruses into effective prophylactic vaccines or oncolytic therapies (Coleman et al. Science 2008). Inspired by the promise the technology holds, Codagenix was founded by our CSO Steffen Mueller, PhD, our CEO J. Robert Coleman, PhD, MBA and Distinguished Professor Eckard Wimmer to commercialize this viral design technology to answer the unmet need for more effective vaccines and increased treatment options for cancer. Codagenix is located at the Broad Hollow Bioscience Research Park in Long Island, NY. Over the last 7 years, Codagenix successfully attracted over $17M in private and public funding to support development of vaccines and oncolytics. Our programs are supported by TopSpin Partners (Roslyn, NY) and government agencies such as the USDA, NIH/NIAID, and the Department of Defense.

Codagenix is located at the Broad Hollow Bioscience Research Park in Long Island, NY.