VaxInnate awarded dengue vaccine development grant by U.S. Government

VaxInnate, a biotechnology firm, announced on Thursday that it was awarded a $2.2 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious diseases for the development of a dengue vaccine.

Dengue is a viral disease, carried by mosquitoes, which claims an estimated 25,000 lives annually. The disease is known to cause fever, headaches and severe joint pain. There is currently no cure for the infection, from which some 100 million people suffer in 100 countries across Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, the Pacific and the Americas.

The NIAID grant provides VaxInnate $2.2 million over the course of three years to develop a recombinant tetravalent dengue vaccine, using their proprietary technology. The technology can genetically fuse vaccine antigens to the bacterial protein flagellin, a potent immune stimulator, which dramatically improves the potency, cost-effectiveness and capacity to manufacture vaccines.

"We're pleased to receive this grant and look forward to working with NIAID to develop a vaccine to prevent dengue, a disease that poses an increasing public health threat worldwide," said President and CEO of VaxInnate Wayne Pisano. "VaxInnate's selection for this grant is another endorsement of the potential of our proprietary technology to meet critical and emerging public health threats."

This will be the fourth U.S. government-funded project VaxInnate will undertake. The company was previously chosen by the Department of Defense to develop vaccines to prevent dengue and malaria.