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Oral COVID-19 Vaccine Proves an Effective Booster in Preclinical Trial

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 11 Jun 2021
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An oral subunit vaccine against COVID-19 has demonstrated promising results as a booster for previously vaccinated persons in preclinical tests.

The MigVax-101 sub-unit oral vaccine being developed by MigVax Ltd. (Qiryat Shmona, Israel) was administered in a boost format following an injected S1 protein in tests carried out on rats. The vaccine elicited markedly higher neutralizing antibody titers than rats receiving an oral placebo booster. In addition, similar to a third booster injection, it elicited more effective neutralizing antibodies.

MigVax-101 is a novel oral subunit vaccine that utilizes a chimeric protein to generate three kinds of simultaneous immunological responses: mucosal, blood-based, and cell-mediated immunity. This triple-armed approach provides comprehensive protection against infection by activating all arms of the immune system, allowing for the effective eradication of the invading virus. Its epitopes were designed using computational chemistry of immunogenic epitopes in IBV, MERS, SARS-COV and SAS-COV-2, focusing on neutralizing antibodies and promoting an immune response.

As an oral vaccine, Mig-Vax-101 offers significant potential advantages over today’s first- generation injected vaccines such as ease of administration, ability to tackle new variants, delivering mucosal immunity, and ease of transport and storage. MigVax currently seeks the financing necessary for it to launch Phase 1 & 2 clinical trials, which, if successful, it believes would lead to commercial availability 9-12 months after the trials begin.

“The results of this trial increase our confidence that our MigVax-101 subunit oral vaccine will make a positive contribution to a world coming to grips with the new post-pandemic reality,” said Prof. Itamar Shalit, MigVax’s Infectious Disease Expert. “Fifteen months into the pandemic, we now see that the struggle to keep Covid under control is nearly as challenging as getting it under control to begin with. Oral boosters such as our MigVax-101 will be key enablers that will help health organizations the world over transition from ‘panic mode’ to routine, due to their ability to reduce the cost and expand the reach of ongoing vaccination programs.”

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