Spanish vaccine company Vaxdyn receives CARB-X funding

Spanish vaccine company Vaxdyn receives CARB-X funding

  • 07/07/2020

CARB-X is funding Spanish biotech Vaxdyn to develop a new vaccine to prevent infections that cause life-threatening pneumonia and other deadly infections.

CARB-X is awarding Vaxdyn, based in Seville, Spain, up to US$892,000, plus an additional $6.36 million if certain project milestones are met, to develop a new vaccine to prevent life-threatening drug-resistant infections, including pneumonia. Vaxdyn is the first Spanish biotech to be funded by CARB-X, a non-profit partnership investing $500 million in the development of innovative vaccines, antibiotics and rapid diagnostics to fight drug-resistant bacteria around the world.

“The threat of drug-resistance underscores the importance of vaccines as powerful weapons to prevent disease as well as the spread of deadly bacteria,” said Erin Duffy, Chief of Research and Development of CARB-X, which is based at Boston University School of Law. “The Vaxdyn project is in the early phases of development, but if successful and approved for use in patients, it could prevent drug-resistant pneumonia in patients with elevated risk, for example those with chronic lung disease or diabetes, or patients undergoing cancer treatment. This vaccine would also have the potential to prevent infections in newborns by stimulating maternal immunity in pregnant women, an issue of critical importance particularly in low-to-middle income countries around the world.”

Vaxdyn is using its proprietary technology to develop multi-antigen vaccines based on detoxified bacterial cells that present key antigens in their native conformation. KapaVax, the Vaxdyn project funded by CARB-X, is under development as a prophylactic vaccine for the prevention of infections caused by drug-resistant Gram-negative pathogens includingAcinetobacter baumanniiKlebsiella pneumoniae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa in multiple at-risk populations. These three bacterial pathogens are deemed serious public health threats. Vaxdyn is working with its key partners, the National Center of Microbiology of the Spanish Institute of Health Carlos III and Laboratorios Reig Jofré.

Vaxdyn’s CEO, Juan J. Infante, said: “In this project, we are determined to develop a vaccine that will prevent life-threatening infections caused by drug-resistant bacteria, providing safe and effective immunity to patients at risk and populations around the world.”

An estimated 700,000 people die each year from drug-resistant bacterial infections, and the death toll is expected to rise unless new preventatives and treatments are found. Pneumonia can be caused by many types of bacteria, including drug-resistant bacteria. Pneumonia is one of the world’s leading cause of death which disproportionately affects the young, the elderly, and the immunocompromised. There were an estimated 880,000 deaths from pneumonia in children under the age of five in 2016. Most were less than 2 years of age. Many of these lives could be saved with vaccines.

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