Butantan publishes preliminary test results of unique Covid-19 and flu vaccine

The director points out that the studies are still initial and are at the so-called proof of concept, when the results of analyzes carried out on non-human samples are collected.

But given the positive developments, he sees the possibility of starting clinical trials, i.e. human trials, within a year.

The date is based on the institute’s experience in producing another Covid-19 vaccine, which began human trials exactly one year after proof-of-concept was completed.

“What facilitates the process is that we mix well-known Butantan products: the flu vaccine, which we have known for many years, and another immunizing agent, which, although recent, uses the same platform as the flu,” says Ricardo. .. study this interaction, pass the stability exams and the first results are good”, he underlined.

Better immune response and longer

The first stage of studies to make the combination vaccine viable has not only shown that it works to protect against Covid-19 and against influenza, but has also given indications that it may have an even more robust immune response and sustainable than current vaccines, explains the research scientist at the Butantan BioIndustrial Center, Paulo Lee Ho, who is directly involved in the study.

“The results are great because we see it working, and we see the response is much better because we include an adjuvant, which provides much more effective protection against both antigens,” he said.

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According to the researcher, the introduction of the adjuvant produced by Butantan itself, called IB160, which is very similar to the adjuvants used in the seasonal flu vaccine, has the additional advantage of requiring a lower amount of antigens. in the composition of the vaccine, thus increasing the capacity to produce .de doses with the same quantity of antigens produced, which is important in times of pandemic and also in view of the possibility of reinforcing vaccination.

“[A inclusão do adjuvante] improves the response not only in quantity, but in quality of antibodies. The study indicates that this inclusion can increase the time of production of these antibodies and that the immune response can last much longer, be more effective without compromising safety”, underlined Paulo.

A vaccine against Covid-19 made in Brazil

The result of a partnership with international organizations, the new vaccine against Covid-19 being developed in Butantan uses inactivated virus technology, one of the safest and most studied in the world, has the particularity of being a low-cost vaccine and is produced from embryonated eggs, which could change the way developing countries combat the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The strategy intends to take advantage of the industrial capacity already installed in the country, in this case the production plant of monovalent influenza antigens for the production of vaccine against Covid-19, using national inputs, unlike other vaccines that use culture media. and expensive and contested reagents in a pandemic scenario.

If proven safe and effective in trials with volunteers, this vaccine has the potential to increase the current supply of Covid-19 vaccines by more than a billion a year, especially in countries in development.

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