Themis Bioscence GmbH, a biotechnology company that produces vaccines for tropical diseases, and the
Paris-based biomedical research center
Institut Pasteur recently published the results of the Phase 1 trial of their chikungunya vaccine.
The double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, first-in-man, active-comparator study tested the safety, immunogenicity, and tolerability of the vaccine on 42 people between November 2013 and June 2014 . The vaccine -- MV-CHIK -- is a recombinant measles virus-based vaccine to prevent people from contracting chikungunya. The study showed that the vaccine has a good safety profile overall, with no serious negative side effects from the vaccine.
"The measles vaccine has already proven its high efficacy and safety on more than a billion vaccinated individuals during the last 30-40 years,” Institut Pasteur's developer of the vaccine technology
said. “Therefore, this platform offers an excellent safety profile and the clear advantage of a validated and easy manufacturing process. The present result demonstrates that a measles vector can be used in the presence of pre-existing immunity to measles, likely because it is a replicating vector. This gives another great advantage to this vaccine strategy."
Chikungunya fever is spread through mosquitoes. Its symptoms include joint and muscle pain, headaches, fevers, and bleeding of the gums and nose.
"Recent outbreaks have raised awareness of chikungunya virus worldwide and whilst further work is needed to show safety, tolerability and ability of the vaccine to protect against live chikungunya virus, our trial data suggest that this novel vaccine is an excellent candidate to help address this urgent medical need,” Themis CEO Erich Tauber said. "With these promising results we are advancing the chikungunya vaccine program and aim to move rapidly into Phase II studies."