Researchers from Rockville biotech company Sanaria Inc. and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) are making progress in the development of highly protective malaria vaccines.
In an article published Wednesday in Nature, a publication from the International Journal of Science, Sanaria’s PfSPZ-CVac (CQ) vaccine is reported as being safe and protecting 100% of six subjects against a variant malaria parasite three months after their last dose in the company’s Phase 1 safety and efficacy trial. This is the first time complete protection against a variant malaria parasite has ever been achieved that long after vaccine administration.
The variant parasite used in the trial is a Brazilian malaria parasite genetically more variant from the African parasites in the vaccine than 700 malaria parasites from Africa. Protection was achieved at a dose that is 20% of the company’s first-generation malaria vaccine dosage.
The article also includes results of a second study using PfSPZ-CVac (PYR), which combines Sanaria’s PfSPZ with pyrimethine (PYR), a drug used for seasonal malaria prevention in African preschoolers. This vaccine was well tolerated and protected 82% of the 17 subjects to whom it was administered from the Brazilian variant parasites or the African vaccine parasites three months after their last dose.