COVID-19: Premas Biotech & Akers Bio make significant progress on vaccine development

The partnership has announced that it has successfully obtained clones for all three selected Coronavirus antigens


New Delhi: US-based Akers Biosciences, Inc., a developer of rapid health information technologies, has announced that its collaboration with Gurugram based Premas Biotech has successfully completed the milestone of obtaining clones of all three coronavirus antigens, Spike (S), Envelope (E), and Membrane (M) that they have selected for their vaccine candidate.

The clone development process has four primary steps including first, the design and synthesis of the genes; second, the selection of the right host; third, the insertion of the gene into the host; and fourth, the verification that the clone has the right gene, and all characteristics are correct.

Prabuddha Kundu, Co-Founder and Managing Director at Premas Biotech, commented, “We are pleased with the successful completion of this phase in the development of our novel vaccine candidate. We believe that our ability to clone all three of these antigens will differentiate our vaccine candidate from others. Specifically, the surface of a virus is what the immune systems sees, and importantly has a multitude of proteins. We are providing the immune system with three shots on goal, instead of one, by including S, E, and M together. This is increasingly important due to the likelihood of protein mutation. If a protein mutates, a vaccine can be rendered non efficacious, a scenario often faced with seasonal flu variations. By including three at one time, the immune system can still recognize the other two antigens, which we believe will enhance its efficacy and assist us in making this vaccine candidate successful.”

Christopher Schreiber, Executive Chairman of Akers, stated, “We believe that we are one step closer to an effective vaccine candidate for the coronavirus pandemic. We have now completed our first important milestone by generating these clones. We also have initiated the second stage in protein expression, which we hope to provide an update on later this month. We are optimistic about the continued success of our partnership with Premas, one that is already starting to bear fruit.”