Development of an Oral Reovirus-Based Vaccination Platform for COVID-19
It is essential to develop a vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, the virus causing the global COVID-19 pandemic. The most efficient vaccines are built on attenuated live viruses, which can be engineered to display specific antigens and, once administered in humans, can safely induce an immune response and immunity to the disease of interest. Fast, reliable, and safe platforms are needed to develop a COVID-19 vaccine and move promising candidates to clinical trials. To support global vaccination campaigns, the vaccine should be easily produced, stored, and administered. Identifying the best possible vaccine candidates early will avoid costly delays in clinical trials. We have identified a novel viral platform based on an anti-cancer virus called Reovirus. We will use this platform to develop safe, reliable, and stable COVID-19 vaccine candidates that can be orally administered and efficiently produced. Our goal is to develop up to 25 vaccine candidates within one year. We will test promising vaccine candidates in cell and animal models to deliver the evidence needed to move the best candidates to clinical trial.