Inovio synthetic flu vaccine shows promising results in elderly

Inovio Pharmaceuticals recently reported the results of a phase I clinical trial showing that its synthetic influenza vaccine is capable of providing better protection for the elderly than current vaccines alone.

The test demonstrated that a dose of SynCon H1N1 universal flu vaccine followed with a dose of a seasonal flu vaccine generated a 40 percent protective immune response in elderly subjects. Elderly subjects who received only the seasonal vaccine had a 20 percent response.

Inovio called the interim data from the trial a significant step in developing a more effective flu vaccine for elderly patients.

"These early results indicate the potential to significantly expand the protection of this at-risk population of elderly subjects against flu," Dr. Gary Kobinger, a lead investigator on the study, said. "With limited evidence of other innovations enhancing protection against influenza, this technology could potentially lead to a breakthrough vaccine."

Inovio's President and CEO Dr. J Joseph Kim said that Inovio technology can serve to enhance current treatments.

"Today's results provide evidence of the power of our DNA vaccine approach to generate protective antibodies in this vulnerable age group," Kim said. "They also show how our vaccines can increase the potency and coverage of existing therapies."