Firms plan to manufacture antigens in tobacco plants and evaluate them with AmVac’s adjuvant candidate in preclinical studies.
AmVac is commencing a research program with Bayer Innovation on a novel production approach for an influenza vaccine. Antigens will be produced, reportedly for the first time, in tobacco plants, which along with AmVac AG’s adjuvant MALP-2 are to be developed into a new generation of flu vaccines.

The research unit for the preclinical work is being opened today at the Parco Scientifico e Tecnologico in Catania, Sicily. Joint R&D work will begin with Bayer’s subsidiary Icon Genetics.

By switching the production base to plants, the Icon Genetics’ magICON technology enables shorter expression times compared with current methods, according to the firms. Also, using tobacco plants means that there will be no contamination by animal proteins such as egg protein. It also has the potential to reduce production costs, the collaborators report.

“Our goal is to achieve preclinical results with our highly motivated team locally as soon as possible and to prepare effectively for any clinical trials,” comments Melinda-Kinga Karpati, CEO of AmVac.

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