Candidates: Two vaccine candidates for the potential prevention of COVID-19

Category: VAX

Types: Vaccines based on exosomes derived from the company’s proprietary cardiosphere-derived cells CDCs (CAP-2003) and engineered exosomes, both of which are in preclinical development

Status: Capricor on April 3 said it was continuing to develop its exosome platform technology as a potential COVID-19 vaccine, even as it pursued compassionate use approval for CAP-1002 (See above). The company seeks to develop two candidates. The first is a virus-like particle (VLP) similar in structure to an exosome, and produced by the same process developed by Capricor in its studies of CAP-1002. The other is an exosome-mRNA vaccine formulation designed to elicit a protective, long-lasting immune response to SARS-CoV-2 by targeting all four structural proteins of the virus.

Capricor’s executive consultant Stephen J. Gould, PhD, professor of biological chemistry at Johns Hopkins University, on March 26 presented Capricor’s approach to exosome-based research and its applicability to a COVID-19 vaccine. Gould discussed two potential types of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines: Exosome-SARS-CoV-2 Display vaccines formulated by exosomes displaying SARS-CoV-2 proteins in their native context, applying human cell exosomes plus recombinant production platform and a 4-part antigen design; and Exosome-SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccines formulated by exosomes, mRNAs, and a loading reagent, applying human cell exosomes plus chemical loading, and a tripartite mRNA design.

Earlier in March, Capricor named Gould to oversee its exosomes program and expand its exosome platform. The first products to emerge from that technology will be two vaccine candidates for the potential prevention of COVID-19, the company said.

COVID-19: 200 Candidates and Counting

To navigate through the >200 potential therapeutic and vaccine options for COVID-19, GEN has grouped the candidates into four broad categories based on their developmental and (where applicable) clinical progress:

FRONT RUNNER – the most promising therapeutics/vaccines based on clinical progress, favorable data or both.

DEFINITELY MAYBE – earlier phases with promising partners, or more advanced candidates in development that have generated uneven data.

KEEPING AN EYE ON… – interesting technology, attracting notable partners, or both, but preliminary data.

TOO SOON TO TELL – longshots pending additional experimental and/or clinical data.

GEN has also tagged the most common treatment types:


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