Sarepta receives grant to study IM delivery of Marburg virus vaccine

Sarepta Therapeutics, Inc., was recently awarded a federal contract to study the intramuscular administration of a vaccine against Marburg virus.

The $3.9 million contract was awarded by the Department of Defense Joint Project Manager - Transformational Medical Technologies, which is a component of the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense.

The JPM-TMT has made significant progress in the development of a therapeutic to fight the highly lethal illness, but the current means of delivery for the countermeasure remains the intravenous method.

Sarepta is now tasked with evaluating the feasibility of using an intramuscular route, a more practical means to deliver the vaccine, which is currently known as AVI-7288.

"With AVI-7288 showing survival rates up to four days post infection, we are eager to determine whether it is feasible to deliver a drug intramuscularly--a route that could reduce the logistical burden of administering the medical countermeasure to our warfighter," John Anderson, a product manager of JPM-TMT's Hemorrhagic Fever Virus-Therapeutics Medical Countermeasures acquisition program, said. "IM delivery is both easier and quicker to administer. The IV route takes up to one hour while IM administration takes just seconds. The potential for efficient treatment in a mass casualty situation is obvious."