Prevention of infectious diseases by vaccination was one of the major medical research success stories of the 20th century. However it seems that the low-hanging fruit has now been harvested, and despite intense effort and investment, we are still some way from obtaining effective vaccines against today’s most threatening infectious diseases, including HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis.
Historically, vaccine development has been something of a trial-and-error enterprise. Recent advances in how the immune system initially recognizes invaders and generates effective responses have provided new clues to inspire the design of rationally designed vaccines. Using our specialized knowledge of the construction of very large molecules, we have developed a new approach for the inexpensive creation of totally synthetic designer vaccines. These fully exploit the new insights, and we have generated a laboratory proof of principle.
Perform pre-clinical immunization studies and optimize where necessary. If successful, proceed into clinical (safety) trials.
When it is effective, vaccination is one of the most economical ways of preventing infectious diseases in developing countries, with all the human, societal, and economic benefits that this could bring. Importantly, this technology is just as applicable to diseases that concern developed countries and we anticipate a sustainable revenue stream from out-licensing, with a significantly greater chance of attracting commercial investment.