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With $26 Million, Shingles Vaccine Candidate Advances

November 20, 2022 • 6:15 am CST
U.S. CDC
(Precision Vaccinations)

With $86 million in funding this year, a privately held clinical-stage biotechnology company aspires to disrupt the $3 billion shingles vaccination market with a safer vaccine.

"Completing this A1 round ($26 million) ahead of data from our Phase 2b trial of CRV-101 head-to-head against Shingrix® is a meaningful demonstration of the confidence our investors have in the CRV-101 program," said George Simeon, Curevo Vaccine CEO, in a press release on November 16, 2022.

"The $86 million we raised in 2022 significantly extends our cash runway and allows us to more aggressively pursue our programs; we look forward to getting topline data from the Phase 2b shingles trial in early 2023."

CRV-101 is a clinical-stage adjuvanted sub-unit vaccine under investigation to prevent shingles in older adults.

CRV-101 was specifically designed to produce an optimal immune response while using a smaller amount of adjuvant with the intention of achieving similar efficacy but with fewer side effects than the currently-approved shingles vaccine.

In the Phase 1 program, CRV-101 demonstrated very robust immunogenicity as measured by humoral and cellular responses with no grade 3 injection site reactions and a low (1.3%) rate of grade 3 systemic side effects ("grade 3" side effects are those vaccination-related reactions severe enough to prevent normal activities).

According to the U.S. CDC website, about 1 in 6 patients receiving the Shingrix® vaccine experienced side effects preventing them from participating in regular activities. However, side effects usually go away after a few days. 

Andy Acker, Portfolio Manager at Janus Henderson Investors, commented, "We were impressed with the Curevo team's execution of the Phase 2b trial, including enrolling 678 patients in just six months, and are looking forward to the results."

If you've had chickenpox, you are at risk for shingles. Shingles is a painful blistering skin rash caused by a reactivation of the varicella-zoster virus, says the CDC.

About 10% of people with shingles develop nerve pain called postherpetic neuralgia (PHN), which can last for months or even years after the rash disappears.

The pain from PHN can be so severe and debilitating that it interferes with daily life.

Other shingles vaccine news is posted at PrecisionVaccinations.com/Shingles.

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