Novavax Initiates Efficacy Trial of COVID-19 Vaccine in South Africa
- Phase 2b clinical trial in collaboration with Professor Shabir Madhi and Wits University
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundationproviding $15 milliongrant toward trial
- Mature trial infrastructure along with significant levels of seasonal transmission may allow for rapid efficacy evaluation
“Because South Africa is experiencing a winter surge of COVID-19 disease, this important Phase 2b clinical trial has the potential to provide an early indication of efficacy, along with additional safety and immunogenicity data for NVX-CoV2373,” said
The randomized, observer-blinded, placebo-controlled Phase 2b clinical trial of NVX-CoV2373 will include two cohorts. One cohort will evaluate efficacy, safety and immunogenicity in approximately 2,665 healthy adults. The second cohort will evaluate safety and immunogenicity in approximately 240 medically stable, HIV-positive adults. This allows for evaluation of the vaccine across a diverse, representative study population.
“The major motivation for the COVID-19 vaccines being evaluated at an early stage in
In the Phase 1 portion of the Phase 1/2 clinical trial, conducted in
NVX‑CoV2373 is a vaccine candidate engineered from the genetic sequence of SARS‑CoV‑2, the virus that causes COVID-19 disease. NVX‑CoV2373 was created using Novavax’ recombinant nanoparticle technology to generate antigen derived from the coronavirus spike (S) protein and contains Novavax’ patented saponin-based Matrix-M™ adjuvant to enhance the immune response and stimulate high levels of neutralizing antibodies. In preclinical trials, NVX‑CoV2373 demonstrated indication of antibodies that block binding of spike protein to receptors targeted by the virus, a critical aspect for effective vaccine protection. In its Phase 1 data of the Phase 1/2 clinical trial, NVX‑CoV2373 was generally well-tolerated and elicited robust antibody responses numerically superior to that seen in human convalescent sera. Phase 2 clinical trials will begin in August.
Novavax’ patented saponin-based Matrix-M™ adjuvant has demonstrated a potent and well-tolerated effect by stimulating the entry of antigen-presenting cells into the injection site and enhancing antigen presentation in local lymph nodes, boosting immune response.
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Source: Novavax, Inc.