PROVIDENCE, RI, May 17, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — EpiVax, Inc. (“EpiVax”) announces the publication “Highly conserved, non-human-like, and cross-reactive SARS-CoV-2 T cell epitopes for COVID-19 vaccine design and validation” in NPJ Vaccines. This research identifies peptide epitopes associated with T cell immunity to SARS-CoV-2 and confirms that recovering patients produce a memory immune response to iVAX-predicted epitopes. T cell immunity is an important component to long-term immune protection and is critical for vaccine developers to create future vaccines that activate a robust T cell immune response.
T cell immune responses to COVID-19 vaccines are not yet well characterized, as initial vaccine development focused on antibody responses. As global focus shifts to providing long-term immunity, researchers are keen to address T cell immunity with follow-on vaccinations/booster shots. EpiVax researchers confirmed the existence of 18 T cell epitopes previously described in peer-reviewed research, but notably also identified 14 additional epitopes that are described here for the first time. These epitopes were also found to be highly conserved across the sequences of all identified SARS-CoV-2 variants, indicating a T cell-directed vaccine would be more resilient than existing vaccines to new variants.
Long considered preeminent experts on T cell immunity and T cell driven vaccine design, EpiVax researchers and collaborators have been developing a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, EPV-CoV19. In a preclinical immunization study in HLA- transgenic mice, EPV-CoV-19 stimulated a strong type 1-skewed T cell response, that is characteristic of safe COVID-19 vaccines.
Asked about the implications of this research, Dr. Lenny Moise, Director of Vaccine Research at EpiVax said: “COVID-19 vaccination studies show neutralizing antibodies are not absolutely required for protection. T cells may play a role in early protection. We have found triggers of T cell immunity that will facilitate development of safe and effective T cell-targeted vaccines”.
For a free online version of this published research visit NPJ Vaccines here
EpiVax is a biotechnology company with expertise in T cell epitope prediction, immune modulation, and rapid vaccine design. EpiVax’s immunogenicity screening toolkits for therapeutics and vaccines, ISPRI and iVAX, are employed in advancing the research of a global roster of companies.
For more information about EpiVax, visit www.epivax.com.
For more information on EpiVax’s SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidate (EPV-CoV19) please contact us here.
Katie Porter, Business Development Manager
Source: EpiVax, Inc.