Coronavirus Vaccine Candidate Gains a French Partner

ABL Europe will manufacture Themis SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidate
scientist working in a lab on a vaccine
(Precision Vaccinations)

An Austria based firm developing immunomodulation therapies announced a new partnership intending to leverage a measles platform to create a vaccine that prevents SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus infections.

Themis and ABL Europe announced on May 11, 2020, that ABL will manufacture Themis’ SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidate in France, preparing for human clinical trials. 

The vaccine is being developed using a proprietary measles virus vaccine platform technology. 

Themis recently announced that it is underway and actively collaborating with Institut Pasteur, the Center for Vaccine Research at the University of Pittsburgh and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) to develop a COVID-19 vaccine candidate. CEPI has invested the initial US $4.9 million for its development. 

In order to rapidly design a COVID-19 vaccine, Themis uses the measles vaccine vector backbone as a vehicle to deliver selected, incorporated protein antigens, in this case from SARS-CoV-2, directly to macrophages and dendritic cells – the most potent and effective antigen-presenting cells that can trigger a specific immune response to the viral antigen. The broad applicability of the technology platform allows for the insertion of multiple large recombinant antigens from different pathogens into the vector. 

Themis said in the press statement, this process is 'the most potent and effective antigen-presenting cells that can trigger a specific immune response to the viral antigen.'

This approach was used to develop a vaccine candidate against SARS, and Themis has previously partnered with CEPI to harness this technology to develop vaccine candidates against Chikungunya, MERS, and Lassa fever.

ABL Europe has been chosen by Themis to manufacture clinical trial supplies of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate in France.

ABL Europe has experience manufacturing a variety of viral vectors, including those based on measles viruses. After the manufacture of the bulk drug, individual doses are filled at ABL under aseptic conditions into vials, ready to be used in clinical trials.

Themis is based in Vienna, Austria, developing immunomodulation therapies for infectious diseases and cancer.

Through advanced understanding of immune system mechanisms, Themis has built a sophisticated and versatile technology platform for the discovery, development, and production of vaccines as well as other immune system activation approaches. Initially focused on preventing infectious diseases, 

Precision Vaccinations publishes news related to SARS-CoV-2 vaccine developments.