Thai-developed nasal spray vaccines pass animal tests

For people who are squeamish about shots, researchers in Thailand are developing two COVID-19 nasal spray vaccine candidates that will start human trials late this year, according to the National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (BIOTEC).
“If we get approval quickly, we can start the first-phase trial late this year and the second phase in March,” said Anan Jongkaewwattana, one of BIOTEC Directors. “If it all goes well, we can start production in the middle of next year.”
Anan said that the two candidates are adenovirus-based and influenza-based, and test results on mice were encouraging. Adenovirus-based vaccines are used against a wide variety of pathogens, and scientists say they are easy to adjust to fight new or particular viruses. They have been developed to fight HIV, Ebola, influenza and tuberculosis, among others.
The findings from the trials showed that the mice that had been injected with COVID-19 did not fall sick, and gained weight when compared with those given injections, Anan said. The nasal vaccines could trigger immune responses in the form of antibodies and T cells, he said.
The adenovirus vaccine candidate is jointly manufactured by BIOTEC and KinGen BioTech, a pharmaceutical company, and meets Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) safety standards.
The influenza-based vaccine could also generate antibodies against COVID-19, Anan said.
BIOTEC plans to collaborate with Chulabhorn Royal Academy to conduct clinical trials targeting the Delta variant. The academy is a higher educational institute located in Bangkok.
Thailand has been using the coronavirus crisis to support innovations in its medical, biomedical and public health sectors to strengthen the country’s safety and competitiveness for the future.
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