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Jun 12, 2007

Vical Receives Grant to Advance RapidResponse DNA Vaccine Platform

  • Vical reports that it was awarded a three-year, $6-million grant from the NIAID for further development of a DNA vaccine manufacturing process that has the the potential to produce several million doses of vaccines in a matter of days.

    “The standard manufacturing methods that are being used to produce conventional vaccines take several months to several years and require specialized, capital-intensive facilities,” explains Vijay Samant, president and CEO of Vical. “The RapidResponse™ system is designed to allow extremely rapid and large-scale production of DNA vaccines with low capital requirements. It is ideally suited to enable an immediate response against emerging diseases affecting large populations, such as a pandemic influenza or SARS.”

    According to Samant, the RapidResponse DNA vaccine manufacturing platform is intended to significantly reduce the time required to develop, manufacture, and deploy vaccines against emerging diseases during the early stages of an infectious outbreak. By using a cell-free manufacturing process, the company believes that the platform can overcome the time, capacity, and cost challenges of producing conventional vaccines for diseases such as influenza.



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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

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