PharmAthene announce progress of SparVax anthrax vaccine

PharmAthene, Inc., announced on Friday the progress of its SparVax next-generation anthrax vaccine program in two separate speeches delivered at the 2013 Bacillus - ACT international anthrax vaccine in Victoria, BC, Canada.

The first presentation was titled "Development of an Immunopotency Assay as a Release and Stability Test for a Recombinant Protective Antigen Anthrax Vaccine" and was delivered by Immunobiology and Assay Development Vice President Peter Fusco. Fusco reported on the progress researchers have made on the development of the drug and how to measure its potency, a major part of obtaining a license from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

"PharmAthene has worked closely with the FDA and our partner, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), to develop more robust assays for anthrax vaccine development," Fusco said. "Recently, the FDA advised us that it has accepted the use of our Immunopotency Assay (IPA) as a suitable replacement for the MCA. We are proud to be advancing technologies for next-generation anthrax vaccine development that can provide a superior alternative to existing technologies."

Director of Analytical Sciences for PharmAthene Dr. Bradford Powell also gave a presentation on the rPA assay development progress, titled "Development of Stability Assays for a Recombinant Protective Antigen Anthrax Vaccine." Powell said PharmAthene is striving to understand a correlation researchers have noted between the physiochemical structure and function of rPA.

"We are very encouraged about the opportunities for our SparVax anthrax vaccine program," PharmAthene President and Chief Executive Officer Eric I. Richman said. "The benefits of rPA-based anthrax vaccines are well-established and we believe our program is at the forefront of efforts in this field. Most importantly, SparVax is expected to meet a fundamental objective of Project BioShield, which was established to encourage the development and acquisition of newer medical countermeasures that offer potential improvements in cost, convenience, safety and effectiveness for the U.S. government and its citizens."