Medicago and GSK to launch large-scale coronavirus vaccine trials

Companies will test an experimental vaccine in combination with an adjuvant.

Canadian pharmaceutical company Medicago and Britain’s GlaxoSmithKline will begin large-scale clinical trials of a combination of an experimental COVID-19 vaccine and an adjuvant involving more than 30,000 volunteers this year, companies said on Thursday.

A few days ago, preliminary data showed that the experimental plant-based Medicago vaccine produced virus-neutralizing antibodies in all volunteers. A smaller dose of the vaccine will be used for further trials, according to Medicago.

The companies said that mid-and late-stage clinical trials would be aimed at testing the safety and possibility of an immune response when taking two doses of the vaccine combined with a GSK adjuvant at 21-day intervals.

“The proven dose reduction and high immune response due to the GSK adjuvant allow us to be confident that we can provide an effective vaccine with acceptable safety indicators in collaboration with Medicago,” said Thomas Breuer, head of the GSK vaccine Department.

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