Experimental Oral COVID-19 Vaccine Shows Promise in Monkeys

By Reuters Staff

October 21, 2021

(Reuters) - A COVID-19 booster vaccine that can be given by mouth to people who already have antibodies from vaccination or prior infection has yielded promising results in monkeys and is likely to be tested soon in humans, according to the company developing it.

The oral booster uses traditional vaccine technology in which a genetically modified carrier virus delivers coronavirus proteins into cells on the surface of the tongue, or lining of the cheeks and throat, stimulating production of antibodies that can block the virus before it gets a foothold in the body, said Dr. Stephen Russell, chief executive of Vyriad in Rochester, Minnesota, who led the study.

"Not only would an oral COVID-19 vaccine be more convenient and acceptable... but it might also lead to better immunity because it is being administered to the site where the COVID-19 virus typically comes into the body," he said.

In monkeys at one week after vaccinations, antibody levels increased by nearly 100-fold, with no side effects, Russell said.

A report of the study posted on bioRxiv ahead of peer review says Vyriad is working with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to plan human trials.

SOURCE: https://bit.ly/3vwny3T bioRxiv, online October 18, 2021.

processing....