BiondVax, MonoSol Rx develop oral universal flu vaccine

BiondVax and MonoSol Rx have joined forces to develop an oral delivery system for the universal flu vaccine M-001.

BiondVax brings to the table M-001, while MonoSol Rx offers a technology known as PharmaFilm: a quick-dissolving film placed on the tongue. Such a film helps patients avoid pills, needles or gels when taking medications. And the technology is small and likely stable at room temperature, meaning influenza vaccines could be sent in the mail. This may provide an advantage should an influenza epidemic occur because the public could quickly access vaccines.

"The universality and immunogenicity of our universal influenza vaccine, M-001, has been demonstrated in animal models and in the clinic," Dr. Tamar Ben-Yedidia, chief scientific officer of BiondVax, said in a statement. "Now that we are taking M-001 through the advanced stages of clinical development, it is the right time to explore the option of delivery by mouth, as this route is easier for most people."

The search for a universal flu vaccine is not a new concept, and researchers have been looking for ways to remove the pain from vaccine delivery. In August, the Infectious Disease Research Institute and Medicago teamed up to deliver viruslike particles through a device that uses pain-free microneedles. And MIT developed a device that delivers a range of drug doses to a number of different depths by controlling the speed and force of a fine jet.

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