Codagenix, a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing prophylactic vaccines and oncolytic virus therapies, and Univercells, signed a research collaboration agreement on an undisclosed, “high-priority” human vaccine target with global public health demand. The partnership will leverage Codagenix’s Synthetic Attenuated Virus Engineering (SAVE) platform for synthetic, live-attenuated virus vaccine development and Univercells’ viral vaccine process development and manufacturing capacity operated by Exothera, its CDMO.

Codagenix is developing a live-attenuated vaccine for which it has developed codon-pair deoptimized, attenuated virus cultured in Vero cells, according to the company. Univercells will assess the Codagenix vaccine candidate in Univercells Technologies’ (a Univercells company) scale-X™ bioreactor system, with commercial production feasibility foreseen on the NevoLine™ Upstream manufacturing platform, said Hugues Bultot, CEO of Univercells, adding that the scale-X single-use bioreactor is designed to deliver intensified production of viral products by relying on a novel structured fixed-bed design.

“The NevoLine platform, the latest equipment of Univercells Technologies, is designed to enable the scalable production of viral vectors resulting in high production throughput and lower long-term operational costs,” continued Bultot.

“Univercells’ viral vaccine manufacturing capabilities are the perfect fit for Codagenix as we expand our portfolio of vaccines developed using our SAVE platform, which utilizes a computer algorithm to recode the genomes of viruses and construct live-attenuated vaccines. This proprietary system enables Codagenix to transform a dangerous viral pathogen into a safe vaccine or solid-tumor therapeutic,” said J. Robert Coleman, PhD, CEO of Codagenix.

“Like COVI-VAC™, our single-dose, intranasal, live-attenuated vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, we believe the vaccine candidate now partnered with Univercells is well-positioned to address the shortcomings of existing interventions against a deadly global health challenge and—if successful—ensure large-scale availability at an affordable price.”