iBio receives patent for plague antigens

iBio, Inc., recently announced that the U.S. Patent Office has accepted its patent application for claims related to certain plague antigens.

The application, entitled "Yersinia Pestis Antigens, Vaccine Compositions and Related Methods" covers claims using antigens comprising Y. pestis F1 proteins fused to the company's iBioModulator protein, as well as several other vaccine compositions and methods for producing an immune response to the antigen.

Plague is caused by the bacterium Y. pestis and is usually found in animals, but is capable of being spread to humans though infected fleas or contact with infected animals. It is also considered a potentially dangerous biowarfare agent.

There is no known vaccine against plague currently approved for use in the United States. In some animal models, vaccines have had success in eliminating the bubonic form of the illness, but they have not been effective against the pneumonic form.

A recombinant plague vaccine incorporating the iBioModulator protein, produced by iBio, however, was recently shown to provide protection against pneumonic plague in non-human primate testing.

IBio specializes in the production of biologics using gene expression in green plants. Its methods have shown success in producing monoclonal antibodies, proteins and vaccines that cannot be successfully made using more traditional methods.