Universal Flu Shot Starts New Study
A new investigational universal influenza vaccine candidate has begun a phase 1 clinical trial at the National Institutes of Health’s Clinical Center in Maryland.
The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the U.S. NIH, sponsors this limited study. It will evaluate the investigational vaccine for safety and its ability to elicit an immune response.
The flu shot candidate, FluMos-v2, was designed by researchers at NIAID’s Vaccine Research Center.
“An ideal universal influenza vaccine could be taken less frequently than once a year and protect against multiple strains of influenza virus. With each new universal influenza vaccine candidate and clinical trial, we take another step closer to that goal,” said Acting NIAID Director Hugh Auchincloss, M.D., in a September 15, 2023 press release.
FluMos-v2 is designed to induce antibodies against various influenza virus strains by displaying part of the influenza virus hemagglutinin protein in repeating patterns on self-assembling nanoparticle scaffolds.
Exposure to these harmless fragments of virus proteins prepares the immune system to recognize and fight the virus. When tested in animals, the experimental vaccine resulted in robust antibody responses.
It is an adaptation of an earlier universal flu vaccine candidate, FluMos-v1, which began first-in-human testing in 2021 and is still undergoing phase 1 trials.
As of September 16, 2023, hundreds of flu vaccine candidates are conducting sponsored clinical trials seeking participants.
Further information about the new trial is available at clinicaltrials.gov using the identifier NCT05968989.