PharmAthene, Inc., a biodefense company developing medical countermeasures against biological and chemical threats, today announced that new data from the company’s next-generation SparVax recombinant protective antigen (rPA) anthrax vaccine program were published in the November issue of the American Society for Microbiology peer-reviewed journal Clinical and Vaccine Immunology.
The article entitled, “Increasing the Potency of an Alhydrogel-Formulated Anthrax Vaccine by Minimizing Antigen-Adjuvant Interactions” describes achievements by PharmAthene scientists in optimizing the vaccine’s formulation to maintain stability and enhance potency. The analytical data, generated through collaboration with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) and other institutions, demonstrate that subtle changes in the interaction between rPA and an immune-stimulating adjuvant (Alhydrogel) yield important improvements in immunogenicity, which correspond to better protection and enhanced survival in mice in an anthrax vaccine potency test.
“There is a compelling need for next-generation anthrax vaccines, based on modern vaccine technologies, that offer the potential for improved safety, convenience and cost-effectiveness for the U.S. government and its citizens,” commented Dr. Peter Fusco, Vice President, Immunobiology and Assay Development for PharmAthene.
“Subunit vaccines, like SparVax, which consist of a purified recombinant antigen and an immune-stimulating adjuvant (Alhydrogel), are being evaluated for their potential to provide a safer and more consistent alternative to partially-purified microbial cell filtrates or extracts. We are very encouraged by the additional data that has been generated, which furthers our understanding of the characteristics that differentiate SparVax from other anthrax vaccines.”
PharmAthene’s rPA anthrax vaccine program has been funded in whole or in part with federal funds from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, National Institutes of Health and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority.