Covid-19: a planned vaccine in patch form to be tested in Lausanne

AwareNovember 18, 2021, 11:08 PM

Unisanté will test 26 volunteers, starting in January, a new generation vaccine that could be administered in the form of a patch. It should protect in the long term from Covid.

The vaccine will be tested in 26 healthy volunteers for six months to observe secondary results.

Emergex vaccines

The university center for general and public medicine, Unisanté, will test a new generation vaccine against Covid from January 3. Approved by Swissmedic, the tests will be carried out in Lausanne in collaboration with the CHUV-UNIL Clinical Research Center (CRC) and the CHUV Department of Immunology and Allergies. This trial comes four months after the launch in Lausanne of a study to evaluate the safety of a new generation vaccine against dengue, which uses the same technology as against Covid and which will be the subject of this trial by Unisanté.

Unlike conventional vaccines that instead stimulate the production of antibodies, the PepGNP-Covid19 vaccine, designed in England by Emergex Vaccines, relies on T lymphocytes, responsible for cellular immunity, to eliminate cells infected by the virus and prevent, ‘Unisanté responded in a press release on Thursday.

Emergex commissioned Unisanté for a phase I clinical study that lasted six months. You must determine if the vaccine does not induce serious undesirable side effects in healthy people. About 26 volunteers will participate. They will receive the vaccine in the arm using microneedles less than a millimeter deep, with the goal of developing a microneedle patch. The first results are expected in June 2022. If the clinical trials are successful, the Emergex vaccine will not be available before 2025.

Long-lasting immunity

This new technology offers real hope, says Unisanté. In fact, the vaccine has the potential to provide long-lasting immunity against Covid-19. It is also better suited to possible viral mutations.

For Blaise Genton, head of the Unisanté study, the vaccine is intended to be a complementary weapon in the arsenal of the fight against Covid. “Anticipating a probable persistence of the virus in the coming years and the possibility of the appearance of new variants less sensitive to current vaccines, it is necessary to develop different technologies,” he explains. The new product also addresses the need for long-term immunity training that avoids seasonal boosters.

It should be noted that, since the beginning of the pandemic, vaccination projects against Covid-19 by means of patches have multiplied, witnessing a movement that could well revolutionize the way in which vaccines will be administered in the future. A study in mice, published Friday in the journal “Science Advances,” revealed promising results. The Australian researchers used a 1 cm by 1 cm plastic patch with more than 5,000 tiny spikes on its surface. These tips have been coated with the vaccine, which is deposited on the skin when penetrated. The antibody response was very strong, even in the lungs.


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