Soligenix, Inc. this week announced that it has initiated a development agreement with Emergent BioSolutions to implement a commercially viable, scalable production technology for the RiVax drug substance protein antigen.
RiVax is a vaccine candidate being developed to protect against ricin exposure. Soligenix will transfer the manufacturing processes and analytics to Emergent to conduct process development work that could potentially lead to a future commercial manufacturing collaboration.
Soligenix has been developing RiVax, in conjunction with its heat stabilization technology, ThermoVax, as a heat-stable biodefense vaccine. RiVax has demonstrated both 100% protection in a preclinical model of lethal ricin exposure and stability up to 1 year at 40 degrees Celsius facilitating storage at ambient temperature. RiVax is being developed as a safe and effective biodefense vaccine which does not require cold chain shipment and storage.
“We are pleased to initiate an agreement with Emergent BioSolutions as we expand our efforts to develop an effective, first-in-class vaccine against ricin toxin exposure in combination with our thermostabilization technology,” stated Christopher J. Schaber, PhD, President and Chief Executive Officer of Soligenix. “Collaborating with NIAID and Emergent is an important step in advancing the development of our ThermoVax™ technology platform. Soligenix intends to use this innovative technology to develop a heat stable ricin toxin vaccine that meets US Government requirements and advances a vaccine thermostabilization platform that may apply to other vaccines.”
The RiVax project has been funded with Federal funds from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). The agreement between Soligenix and Emergent is specifically funded by NIAID under Contract No. HHSN272201400039C.