GSK, Crucell join forces on new malaria vax

After joining forces to conduct preclinical research on a malaria vaccine candidate, Crucell and GlaxoSmithKline say they were inspired to push ahead with clinical trials of a new combo vaccine that promises to work even better.

In the new pact, the companies will combine Glaxo's late-stage RTS,S/AS vaccine with the early-stage vaccine coming out of Crucell's labs. The companies didn't reveal any of the financial details involved in the collaboration. Crucell and Glaxo have been working in collaboration with the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research for the past seven years.

Their new project will rely on Crucell delivery technology--AdVac--which takes a piece of genetic material from a parasite or virus and loads it into a delivery vehicle, or vector, that mimics the cold virus.

"We are very excited about this collaboration with GSK, which brings new impulse to the potential of eradicating malaria as one of the top three killers in the world," says Ronald Brus, the CEO of Crucell. "Malaria currently represents one of the most prevalent infections in tropical and subtropical areas, causing close to 900,000 deaths every year, mostly amongst children. I am confident a partnership of this kind will allow us to take a vital step towards our goal of bringing meaningful innovation to global health."

- read Crucell's release for more info
- here's the story from Reuters