Thursday, 12 July 2012

Inovio Pharmaceuticals HIV vaccine featured on ABC-TV

Inovio Pharmaceuticals (AMEX:INO) was recently featured on ABC-TV news for its Pennvax-G HIV vaccine, which could be a breakthrough in the crusade to treat and prevent the HIV/AIDS virus.
In the report, ABC said Inovio may be closer than any other company to producing an effective vaccine for HIV, a virus that erupted in the 1980s and has killed over 30 million people worldwide, according to the United Nations.
Inovio CEO Joseph spoke with ABC, saying that Inovio’s synthetic vaccines are “revolutionizing” the vaccine industry by using cutting-edge technology.
Synthetic vaccines aren’t traditional like ones for the flu that take a dead virus to create a vaccine, but are actually computer-designed and then manufactured and tested in the traditional way.
ABC noted that Inovio’s vaccine is also revolutionary in another way, as it is designed to prevent the disease, and more importantly, to treat HIV. The vaccine is also designed to deal with the HIV’s ability to mutate.
"We can make a vaccine not just against a single strain of HIV for instance, but also against multiple, global strains," said Kim in the segment.
According to the news report, since 2008, the National Institutes of Health has given Inovio $25 million to further its research.
Inovio estimates it may be five to seven years before the Pennvax-G HIV vaccine is ready to go to market. The company is also working on vaccines for the flu, prostate, cervical and other types of cancers.
To watch the full ABC report, visit
Earlier this week, Inovio said that the first patients have been treated in its clinical study testing immune responses in elderly adults that were immunized with the company's H1N1 universal flu vaccine.
The phase 1 study will look at the ability of Inovio's SynCon vaccine alone, as well as in combination with the 2012 seasonal influenza vaccine, to generate protective levels of immune responses.
The company will also look at the vaccine's ability to generate specific antibody immune responses against unmatched flu strains, and T-cell immune responses that can be helpful in fighting the flu, especially for the elderly, which are absent from current flu vaccines.
Inovio's SynCon technology allows it to design synthetic vaccines with the potential to protect against unmatched sub-types and strains of pathogens, including newly emergent, unknown strains of a virus that will periodically emerge through mutation, as in the case of influenza.
The H3N2, H1N1, and Type B influenza strains represented in each year’s seasonal influenza vaccine are updated annually, but only protect against a single strain within each of these subtypes.
When a selected strain mutates, the annual vaccine may not provide protection, as witnessed with the 2009 swine flu H1N1 pandemic.
The company noted that the population most susceptible to the flu, those over 65 years of age, represent about 90 per cent of annual flu deaths in the US as older people's immune systems are typically weaker.
The phase 1 open label study will take place at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Canada, funded in part by a grant from the Canadian Institute of Health Research, Inovio said.
Shares of Inovio were up 2.20 per cent as at 2:15 pm EDT on Thursday, trading at 46 cents.

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