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INOVIO Doses First Participant In Phase 2 Trial For DNA Vaccine Against MERS

INOVIO (INO) said that it has dosed the first phase 2 trial subject in its quest to develop the first vaccine against the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome or MERS.

INOVIO said its phase 2 trial is designed to evaluate INO-4700, its DNA vaccine candidate for the prevention of MERS, a disease in the coronavirus family for which there are no approved vaccines.

MERS is caused by a coronavirus that is 100 times deadlier than COVID-19 and fatal to approximately 34% of those who have the disease.

The multi-center Phase 2 trial is a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled study designed to evaluate the safety, tolerability, and immunogenicity of INO-4700 administered with INOVIO's smart device, the CELLECTRA 2000, in about 500 healthy adult volunteers.

Results from the first-in-human phase 1 trial found high levels of binding antibodies in 92% of evaluated subjects. Significant antigen-specific cytotoxic T-lymphocyte (CTL) responses were also observed. Importantly, 98% of vaccinated subjects generated an antibody and/or T cell response against the MERS vaccine.

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