A vaccine collaboration goes needle-free

GeoVax and Enesi Pharma collaborate on development of vaccines administered by ImplaVax, a needle-free vaccine delivery platform

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ATLANTA, GAGeoVax Labs Inc., a biotechnology company developing human vaccines, and Enesi Pharma, a pharmaceutical company developing unique injectable solid-dose drug-device vaccine products, revealed today a collaboration to develop solid-dose needle-free vaccine formulations utilizing GeoVax’s novel MVA-VLP vaccine platform in combination with Enesi’s ImplaVax device and formulation technology.  The collaboration is expected to include development of thermostable solid-dose needle-free vaccines for a variety of infectious diseases, and the potential to generate improved vaccine responses with simplified administration and reduced storage and distribution costs.
“We are delighted to begin this collaboration with Enesi Pharma, as we believe their technology has the potential to revolutionize needle-free vaccine delivery for multiple indications in key global markets,” said Farshad Guirakhoo, PhD, GeoVax’s Chief Scientific Officer. “The combination of our thermally stable vaccines with Enesi’s ImplaVax needle-free device is a natural fit and we think there is significant scientific rationale for expecting success, especially in resource constrained countries where cold chain storage is an issue.”
GeoVax’s vaccine technology is based on its patented Modified Vaccinia Ankara (MVA) Virus-Like Particle (VLP) platform, which generates noninfectious VLPs in the individual being vaccinated. This technology mimics a natural viral infection, triggering the body to produce a robust and durable immune response (the way that vaccines protect against diseases), typically with only a single dose required for desired protection.  As a result the GeoVax vaccines reportedly provide the opportunity to deliver a more efficient, lower cost, highly effective vaccine. 
Enesi’s proprietary ImplaVax solid-dose formulation and needle-free device technology comprises three main components: a single precision-engineered solid-dose Universal Vaccine Implant (UVI) containing the vaccine construct, a separate single-use disposable unit dose cassette pre-loaded with a single solid UVI, and a reusable handheld spring-powered actuator. The benefits include assured consistency with dosing, better product stability and ease of use. There is also the potential to minimize vaccination pain and stress, and to eliminate needle disposal and needle stick injuries.  
Added David Hipkiss, CEO of Enesi Pharma, “Our novel ImplaVax technology has great potential for developing the next generation of vaccine products for infectious diseases and allergies. We have been impressed with the GeoVax MVA-VLP vaccine platform and feel that when taken together makes an excellent potential combination. We look forward to working with GeoVax on this exciting new project.”

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