Evaxion, a clinical-stage biotechnology company specializing in the development of AI-powered immunotherapies, is collaborating with Afrigen Biologics (Afrigen) to develop a prophylactic vaccine based on Evaxion’s EDEN-discovered gonorrhea targets.
Evaxion’s Chief Scientific Officer, Birgitte Rønø, expressed enthusiasm about the collaboration, stating: “We are thrilled about this partnership. It offers a unique opportunity to deliver our EDEN-identified antigens using mRNA and it accelerates clinical validation of the EDEN platform. This partnership has the potential to address a serious unmet global medical need against the pathogen for which no vaccine currently exists.”
Gonorrhea, caused by the bacteria Neisseria gonorrhoeae, is a sexually transmitted disease that exerts a significant influence on global sexual and reproductive health and elevates the susceptibility to HIV, another major health problem in many low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The World Health Organization (WHO) has reported an alarming estimate of 82 million new gonorrhea infections occurring annually worldwide with a rise in antibiotic-resistant cases.
The EDEN-discovered antigens have demonstrated high levels of protection in preclinical studies. This partnership will explore the expression and biological activity of the antigens in mRNA format. Following the validation phase, the partners will negotiate a subsequent agreement for clinical development and commercialization, with the opportunity to bring in additional partners.