Melbourne, Australia Developing Next Generation COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine Candidate
Melbourne, Australia – (COMMERCIAL THREAD) – mRNA Victoria, the Australian government agency in the state of Victoria responsible for developing the state’s mRNA manufacturing and research capacity, has announced that a locally developed COVID vaccine candidate will enter trials Phase 1 clinics in October 2021. Preliminary trial results for the vaccine candidate are expected in the first half of 2022.
Victoria is home to Australia’s biotech community with a globally recognized research sector comprising the country’s leading mRNA researchers and existing capabilities in medical, biotechnology, pharmaceutical and advanced manufacturing technology. “Victoria has a world-class medical and biotechnology research community and is home to Australia for mRNA, ”said Jaala Pulford, Minister of Innovation, Medical Research and Digital Economy for Victoria.
Victoria mRNA will fund the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences (MIPS) to manufacture doses of the COVID-19 mRNA vaccine for testing, establishing Australia’s first mRNA vaccine manufacturing capacity. While Victoria mRNA is tasked with building Victoria’s mRNA manufacturing capacity to accelerate Australia’s future supply of coronavirus vaccines, its mission has broader implications. In addition to ensuring vaccine safety, supporting local manufacturing, and creating a stronger defense against future pandemics, Victoria’s expanding mRNA capabilities have the capacity for large-scale therapeutic application.
Australia’s first locally developed COVID-19 mRNA vaccine candidate is a collaboration between MIPS and the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity (Doherty Institute), reflecting Victoria’s strong mRNA research sector and leading national burden to develop mRNA manufacturing capacity.
The Victorian nominee is part of a combined research program that is developing two related second-generation COVID-19 vaccines. The vaccine candidate focuses on the spike of the SARS-CoV-2 virus spike protein, known as the receptor binding domain (RBD), which mediates the ability of the virus to attach and enter the cell .
Monash University professor of pharmaceutical biology, Colin Pouton, leads the MIPS arm of the team. Pouton said: “The Victorian government’s investment in establishing Victoria’s mRNA manufacturing capacity presents exciting opportunities to develop life-saving vaccines and therapeutic treatments for all Australians. ”
Michael Kapel, CEO of mRNA Victoria and former Commissioner for the Americas for the Government of Victoria, said: “The world-class research team at the Monash Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences has achieved a breakthrough with its next-generation COVID-19 vaccine candidate. These and other institutions in Victoria’s biotechnology community, in collaboration with Victoria mRNA, will make Victoria a world leader in the research and production of mRNA-based therapies.
mRNA Victoria is responsible for the Victorian Government’s commitment to establish a world-class Victorian mRNA and RNA industry by supporting the supply chain and R&D for pre and clinical research, commercialization and manufacturing investments . It identifies key capacities, gaps and opportunities and leads engagement and partnership with national and international companies, researchers and stakeholders on behalf of the Government of Victoria to strengthen RNA and chain capacity. procurement through a series of investments and programs.