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VBI and Aston in pointless delivery!

VBI and Aston in pointless delivery!

Canadian-based vaccine experts VBI have teamed up with Aston University to develop broadly reactive and needle-free delivery of vaccines for human healthcare improvements. The four-year Co-operative Award in Science and Engineering will assist in developing two novel vaccine technologies that can induce broader protection than current vaccines avoiding the use of needles for administration.

Needle-free vaccines are more cost effective, avoid needle stick injuries and large-scale disposal of biohazardous needles, and avoid the need for trained personnel. A vaccine that can induce a broader degree of protection than current vaccine technologies is essential to protect against infections such HIV and HCV, and could lead to an influenza vaccine that confers multi-season protection.

VBI will design a synthetic (peptide-based) vaccine against influenza with the aim of developing a vaccine that protects against current and future strains of influenza. Aston will investigate the formulation and application of drug delivery systems to enhance the potency of this vaccine, and provide a needle-free means of vaccination. All of the formulation work anticipates the ability to avoid the need for cold-chain distribution, making such vaccines particularly well-suited for distribution throughout the developing world.

Dr David E. Anderson, Vice President for Immunology, VBI said: 'This collaboration will be of great benefit to VBI in facilitating the translation of novel internal research into vaccine formulations ready for clinical testing that address significant unmet needs.'

CASE awards are a highly effective mechanism for companies to increase their competitiveness by engaging in costeffective research collaborations with universities. Industry drives the research project of their choice according to their business needs. A top quality researcher is recruited and dedicated to each research project for a three-year period to work towards a PhD; and is supervised by a leading academic from a relevant technical area.

If you would like to find out more about how to get involved in CASE awards, please contact Emily Wakefield on ext 3396.

Words by Paul Burkwood

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