Swedish researchers launch anti-smoking vax trial

Researchers for Sweden's Independent Pharmaceutica are launching a mid-stage study of a new nicotine vaccine designed to help people give up smoking. The vaccine--dubbed Niccine--was developed by Torgny Svensson, a professor at the prestigious Karolinska Institute, and spun off into a new company based at the institute. The vaccine relies on antibodies to latch onto nicotine molecules, flagging them for destruction by the immune system. By wiping out the nicotine, the vaccine eliminates the nicotine "high" associated with smoking.

There are a number of development programs in place for a vaccine to fight nicotine addiction, but Independent Pharmaceutica says they're searching for data that would prove their approach is more potent and offers fewer side effects. Independent Pharmaceutica is competing against Cytos, which has already published mid-stage data, and Celtic Pharma, which plans to release its mid-stage data this quarter. Nabi Pharmaceuticals has also been busy in this category.

About 400 people in Nordic countries are being recruited for the Phase II trial.

- read the story from the AFP

ALSO: European officials have rejected a challenge to Nabi Pharmaceuticals' patent for NicVax, an anti-smoking vaccine. Report

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