Sanofi SA (NASDAQ:SNY) and Translate Bio Inc (NASDAQ:TBIO) released the preliminary findings of their preclinical trials evaluating an mRNA-based coronavirus vaccine candidate called MRT5500.
The two companies announced that the initial findings from the preclinical trials showed that MRT5500 provoked a desirable immune response against the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The preliminary data is also great news for the novel vaccine development because it paves the way for the next stage which is clinical development and testing. Sanofi and Translate Bio will likely initiate a Phase 1/2 clinical trial before the end of 2020.
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“To tackle this global pandemic, we must look to both the strong knowledge we have from years of infectious disease expertise and the promise of new, innovative technologies,” stated Sanofi’s Executive Vice President, Thomas Triomphe.
Triomphe also described the recently announced positive preclinical preliminary findings as a major milestone in the development of an effective and safe vaccine against SARS-CoV-2. The executive also described the favorable findings as a good demonstration of the efficiency of Sanofi’s technology. Translate Bio’s CEO Ronald Renaud added that he was encouraged by the positive findings that his company achieved in partnership with Sanofi as far as the vaccine development is concerned.
The preliminary findings
The preliminary findings of the preclinical trials revealed that MRT5500 promotes the production of antibodies to combat the coronavirus. Researchers involved in the study evaluated four dose levels in mice subjects; 0.2, 1, 5, and 10 µg per dose. The mice received the doses at 3-week intervals. The vaccine induced the production of high levels of dose-dependent neutralizing antibodies and binding antibodies that specifically react with the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein.
The researchers also observed 100 percent seroconversion at each dose level and this was observed within the first dose administration. The second dose yielded a titer increase. MRT5500 was also administered to non-human primates at three dose levels; 15, 45, and 135 µg per dose.
The researchers observed that most of the non-human primates produced neutralizing antibodies that are specific to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. The positive findings from both the mice subjects and non-human primate subjects demonstrate MRT5500’s potential as a working vaccine for the coronavirus.