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Akston Biosciences begins patient dosing in phase II trial of Covid-19 vaccine candidate, AKS-452 in India

Our Bureau,Mumbai
Tuesday, November 23, 2021, 10:00 Hrs  [IST]

Akston Biosciences Corporation, a developer of new classes of biologic therapeutics, announced that the first of 100 subjects were dosed in an open-label bridging study of AKS-452, its protein subunit Covid-19 vaccine candidate, in India.

AKS-452 is shelf stable for at least six months at room temperatures (up to 25° Celsius or 77° Fahrenheit) and maintains its potency for one month at 37° Celsius (99° Fahrenheit).

India’s Drug’s Controller General of India (DCGI), ministry of health and family welfare, approved the open-label bridging study, being conducted by the Supe Heart & Diabetes Hospital and Research Centre, in Nashik, India along with four other sites in the state of Maharashtra. Veeda Clinical Research Ltd., a CRO with experience overseeing complex clinical trials, is managing the study.

The open-label bridging study will be conducted with 100 healthy volunteers, age 18 and older. The first participants were dosed under the supervision of principal investigator, Pravin Dinkar Supe, M.D. founder of the Supe Heart & Diabetes Hospital and Research Centre. A double-blind phase II/III study will follow with 1,500 healthy volunteers, age 18 and older, across 12 clinical sites in five states across India.

In both studies, healthy volunteers will receive two 90 µg doses 28 days apart. Of the 1,500 participants in the phase II/III study, 1,150 will receive the two-dose regimen, while the remaining 350 will receive two placebo doses. The first dose will include AKS-452 and an adjuvant, which primes the body’s immune response, with the second dose consisting only of AKS-452.

“The highly promising results from a previous phase II trial in the Netherlands warrant moving forward with an open-label bridging study and the phase II/III clinical trial here in India to help speed a low-cost, temperature-resistant vaccine that can be easily manufactured, transported and stored in economically deprived countries in Africa and Asia,” said Dr. Supe. “These countries lack the infrastructure to transport and store the currently-approved vaccines that require ultra-cold conditions.”

“As a second-generation vaccine, AKS-452 has the potential to more easily safeguard the health of populations worldwide against Covid-19. Using our proprietary Fc fusion protein platform, AKS-452 is designed to be well tolerated for primary vaccination and boosting when immunity wanes,” said Todd Zion, Ph.D., president & CEO of Akston Biosciences.


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