The Australian subsidiary of China’s Clover Biopharmaceutics has partnered with the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovation (CEPI) to develop a COVID-19 vaccine.
In its ninth global collaboration to tackle the coronavirus crisis, CEPI will invest an initial $3.5 million in a partnering agreement withClover Australia, bringing the organisation’s total investment in COVID-19 vaccine R&D to $39.6 million.
This initial investment will support Clover Australia in its efforts to initiate a phase 1 clinical trial in Australia of its COVID-19 S-Trimer vaccine candidate.
This innovative vaccine candidate is based on Clover Biopharmaceutical’s proprietary Trimer-Tag vaccine technology platform, which is a novel way to produce the spike proteins of the COVID-19 virus in a native trimeric form for use in a vaccine.
If successful in clinical trials, Clover Biopharmaceuticals has the capacity to rapidly scale up the production of the vaccine using its in-house biomanufacturing capabilities.
“We are delighted to partner with Clover Australia on their innovative COVID-19 S-Trimer vaccine candidate. They produced their vaccine within a month of the virus sequence becoming available, and they have rapidly advanced toward a first in human trial,” said CEPI CEO Richard Hatchett.
“This vaccine candidate is an important new addition to the CEPI portfolio. CEPI has invested in a diverse range of innovative vaccine platforms, as well as more established vaccine technologies, to maximise our chances of success as we pursue our ambition of making COVID-19 vaccines available for broad use.”
Joshua Liang, Chief Strategy Officer of Clover Biopharmaceuticals and co-inventor of COVID-19 S-Trimer vaccine candidate, said: “At Clover Biopharmaceuticals, we are proud to receive CEPI’s funding and support for Clover Australia, which are critical to enabling the ongoing development and acceleration of our COVID-19 S-Trimer vaccine program that utilises our innovative Trimer-Tag platform technology.
“We have been working tirelessly and hope to contribute significantly to global efforts in fighting this pandemic that has affected us all.”