Enesi's ImplaVax® technology designed to unlock the full potential of DNA/RNA vaccines by eliminating need for cold-chain storage and distribution

OXFORD, England, Sept. 3, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Enesi Pharma ("Enesi"), an innovative biotechnology company developing next-generation vaccination products targeting serious diseases, is delighted to announce its partnership with the University of Adelaide to develop a new thermostable, solid dose DNA vaccine for Zika virus to prevent infection of pregnant women and the resultant congenital effects in the unborn child.

This project aims to employ Enesi's ImplaVax® formulation expertise and platform to create a protective Zika virus DNA vaccine in a solid dose implant format for transcutaneous delivery via a needle-free device. The innovative combination of this ImplaVax® formulation and delivery system with the novel DNA vaccine construct developed by researchers at the University of Adelaide is expected to enhance the vaccine's efficacy, thermal stability and allow for safe and rapid vaccination of target populations that are otherwise geographically and economically disadvantaged.

DNA and RNA vaccines are becoming increasingly prominent and hold great potential against many diseases, as highlighted by the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. However, they also present important thermostability challenges and require an uninterrupted end-to-end cold chain throughout to maintain potency up to the point of administration. Enesi's ImplaVax® technology aims to address these challenges by creating needle-free solid dose vaccines that are thermally stable at temperatures up to 40oC and eliminate the need for cold-chain storage and distribution.

The new AUD1.35 million collaboration with the University of Adelaide aims to advance the development of a novel thermostable, solid dose Zika virus DNA vaccine to Phase 1 clinical trials. The programme is being funded with AUD675,500 from the Australian Government's Biomedical Translation Bridge (BTB) programme, and additional funding from Enesi Pharma, The Hospital Research Foundation, Adelaide Enterprise Commercial Accelerator Scheme and the University of Adelaide's Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences.

David Hipkiss, Enesi Pharma CEO, commented:

"We are delighted to enter this new partnership with the University of Adelaide, and to leverage our ImplaVax® technologies to tackle the significant public health issue that Zika virus infection represents. We are particularly excited that this new collaboration is focused on advancing the development of a solid dose DNA vaccine through application of our ImplaVax® technology. While holding huge promise, it is recognised that DNA and RNA vaccines have significant cold chain requirements, which could impact the efficiency and reach of final products.

"We believe that our ImplaVax® technology could provide a solution to overcome these barriers. This belief is based upon our earlier work which has evidenced the ability for ImplaVax®-enabled DNA vaccine candidates to be thermally stable and retain their immunogenicity potential. A positive outcome from our new collaboration, alongside other projects evaluating ImplaVax®-enabled DNA and RNA vaccines, could help unlock the full potential of such approaches across a vast range of diseases, from Zika to Covid-19."

Zika is a mosquito-transmitted 'flavivirus' currently circulating in the Americas and Asia, which causes microcephaly (a birth defect where a baby's head is significantly smaller than expected) and other severe birth defects in infants born to infected mothers. These defects cannot be corrected, and the accompanying disabilities are lifelong and catastrophic. Zika can also cause Guillain-Barré syndrome in adults, and there is currently no therapy or approved vaccine available to prevent infection.

The Australian Government's Biomedical Translation Bridge program, delivered by Australia's Industry Growth Centre, MTPConnect, is an initiative of the Medical Research Future Fund, and aims to facilitate the translation of new therapies, technologies and medical devices through to the proof of concept stage.


About Enesi Pharma

Enesi Pharma is developing next-generation vaccination products targeting serious diseases affecting people around the world. We work in partnership with global companies, government agencies, leading academic institutions and non-governmental organisations with the goal of making a positive impact on global health.

Our ImplaVax®-enabled vaccination products leverage our innovative rapidly dispersing solid-dose formulation and needle-free delivery technologies and are applicable across all vaccine formats. ImplaVax® products are designed to enhance the immune response and offer significant benefits for patients, care givers, healthcare professionals and payers through enhanced effectiveness, safety, ease of use, reliability and stability, and a strong subject preference over administration using needle and syringe. They can be administered with minimal training and are also rapidly deployable while eliminating the need for cold-chain storage.

Our pipeline targets a range of common and emerging infectious diseases, inflammatory diseases and allergies, and has been established through collaborations with world-class organisations, including BARDA DRIVe*, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Innovate UK, the University of Oxford, and the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research .

Enesi's experienced leadership team has a proven track record in the successful development and commercialisation of innovative products delivering high value outcomes for all stakeholders and is supported by a world-renowned Scientific Advisory Board.

For more information visit www.enesipharma.com or follow Enesi on Twitter at www.twitter.com/enesi_pharma.

*This project has been funded in whole or in part with US Federal funds from the Department of Health and Human Services; Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response; Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, DRIVe, under this contract.


Enesi Pharma
David Hipkiss, CEO
Tel: +44 (0) 7968 707072
Email: [email protected] 

Citigate Dewe Rogerson (for Enesi Pharma)
Mark Swallow, Nathaniel Dahan
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7638 9571
Email: [email protected] 

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SOURCE Enesi Pharma

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