Farmingdale, N.Y., July 22, 2020 – Codagenix, Inc., a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing prophylactic vaccines and oncolytic virus therapies, today announced the award of a $2.2 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), for the continued development of its human codon deoptimized live-attenuated vaccine against respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) for the elderly. In addition to the grant, the project will also utilize NIAID’s suite of preclinical services to support R&D that will enable future commercial-scale manufacturing of Codagenix’s codon deoptimized RSV vaccine.RSV, a common respiratory virus, leads to hospitalization of ~177,000 people over 65 years of age, of which ~14,000 die annually. There is currently no vaccine available against RSV.
Codagenix is developing a live-attenuated vaccine against RSV for use in infants and the elderly. The vaccine was generated using Codagenix’s proprietary algorithm that uses codon deoptimization to weaken (attenuate) viruses. The goal of this approach is to stimulate a robust immune response mimicking that elicited by the wild-type virus, without causing clinical illness or further transmission.
“We are thrilled to continue our fruitful partnership with NIH/NIAID on the development of an RSV vaccine,” said Codagenix’s CEO, J. Robert Coleman, PhD, MBA. “The very young and the very old are at significant risk of hospitalization and complications from RSV infection. NIAID’s support will allow Codagenix to take a large step toward bringing our RSV vaccine to the marketplace.”
This live-attenuated vaccine is slated to enter Phase I clinical trials later in 2020, focused on healthy elderly volunteers. Subsequent studies will address the safety and efficacy of the vaccine in children. The NIAID/NIH award is made through grant #2R44AI131756-03A1.
Codagenix is a clinical-stage synthetic biology company that uses software to recode the genomes of viruses, constructing live-attenuated vaccines or viruses to prevent viral infections or treat solid tumors. Codagenix’s recoded vaccine candidates are a perfect antigenic match to the target virus and induce a robust immune response to all viral antigens. For cancer, our nimble platform allows us to turn a virus into a potential oncolytic immuno-oncology therapy. Both programs rely on scalable, low-cost manufacturing. Codagenix Inc. spun out of the laboratory of National Academy of Science Member Eckard Wimmer at Stony Brook University in 2012 and is located at the Broad Hollow Bioscience Research Park in Farmingdale, N.Y. Our programs are supported by Adjuvant Capital, TopSpin Partners, Euclidean Capital, and government agencies such as the USDA, NIH/NIAID and the Department of Defense.
For more information, visit www.codagenix.com.