Inovio Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has announced it has been selected to receive a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Army’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program to further advance the development of Inovio’s next generation delivery device capable of simultaneously administering multiple vaccines via a skin-surface, needle-free electroporation delivery.
The primary goal of this U.S. Army -funded effort is to further develop a device that would facilitate rapid vaccination of U.S. troops stationed around the world against multiple infectious diseases and protect civilian populations from pandemic threats. The new needle-free device could be used to deliver Inovio’s portfolio of biodefense and commercial infectious disease vaccines including those for MERS, Ebola, HIV, influenza, and RSV. Today’s grant is a follow-on to previous grants from the US Department of Defense . Initial testing of a prototype design has already yielded excellent antigen expression and immunogenicity from the dermal tissue being accessed using this novel non-invasive electroporation delivery concept.
Dr. J. Joseph Kim , Inovio President and CEO, said, “Inovio has already accomplished building its CELLECTRA® 5PSP as a portable fully-automatic device for VGX-3100 and other cancer immunotherapies – this is the device that would take us into commercialization. It is our further goal to advance and commercialize a needle and pain-free electroporation device to be used particularly for prophylactic vaccination. This new grant will move us closer to achieving this goal and enable us to target several important commercial infectious disease opportunities that will be well served by non-invasive vaccination.”