A University of Queensland (UQ) start-up company, Coridon Pty Ltd, established to commercialise Professor Ian Frazer's work in developing next generation DNA vaccines, has successfully completed pre-clinical efficacy testing of its prototype Herpes Simplex Virus 2 (HSV-2) vaccine, with outstanding results.
The company will now look to progress the program into clinical studies.
Working at the UQ Diamantina Institute, Coridon is developing DNA vaccines for the prevention and treatment for a range of infectious diseases and cancers in humans, utilising the company's patented technology.
Collaborating with Professor David Koelle and his colleagues at the University of Washington in Seattle, Coridon tested a number of different formulations of Coridon's prototype vaccine. These proved 100% effective at protecting animals against HSV-2 infection, confirming an earlier study with the University of Washington which also demonstrated 90-100% protection against infection.
These results were presented at the 5th Vaccine and ISV Annual Global Congress in Seattle earlier this month.
Professor Ian Frazer said Coridon has now secured additional funding from major investor Allied Healthcare Group (ASX: AHZ) to begin manufacturing the vaccine and conduct pre-clinical safety studies before testing the vaccine in a Phase I clinical study.
The results of our herpes vaccine mark the beginning of an exciting period," Professor Frazer said.
"Over the next 12 months, we expect pivotal data showing that our HSV vaccine, which incorporates Coridon optimisation technology, produces similar immune responses in the clinic to those seen in the animal trials.
Professor Matt Brown, Director of The University of Queensland Diamantina Institute, said the collaborative approach with researchers and Coridon has paved the way for the success of such critical technology.
We are very excited at The University of Queensland Diamantina Institute to be partnering with Coridon in developing this breakthrough vaccine technology, which promises to both prevent and treat infections with HSV-2, which causes a common and unpleasant viral illness, Professor Brown said.
This vaccine success is made possible by bringing together UQDI's excellence in immunology research with private industry and other leading international researchers.
We look forward to working with Coridon in developing this vaccine as it moves towards clinical trials.
Allied Healthcare Group's Managing Director, Mr. Lee Rodne said the data provides fantastic validation to the Coridon platform which could be applied to a number of infectious diseases.
"We are excited about the path forward for the program as it moves toward clinical studies, Mr. Rodne said.