Glaxo’s Covid-19 effort progresses, this time thanks to Medicago

Glaxosmithkline, one of the world’s largest vaccine makers but absent from the first wave of Covid-19 jabs, confirmed this week that it has a chance of playing a role in the tail of the pandemic. Two novel vaccines are now at the pivotal stage. The first is partnered with Sanofi and the second with Medicago, with Glaxo providing the adjuvant for both. These projects are being developed with the market for booster shots in mind. High immune response after a single dose in patients with prior infection shows strong booster potential, Sanofi and Glaxo said of their candidate. Canada’s Medicago, which released phase 2 data yesterday, pointed to strong neutralising antibody responses and the potential for a potent, adjuvanted vaccine to provide cross-protection against emerging variants. The biggest challenge for these efforts arguably lies in recruiting patients for placebo-controlled phase 3 trials in regions where existing vaccines are readily available; the developers have laid out seemingly ambitious predictions for progress, with both promising data well before the end of this year. Glaxo also has a stake in two other major pending vaccine readouts, from Curevac and Novavax, so the UK pharma giant will enter the front line of the pandemic sooner or later.

Glaxo's Covid-19 vaccine efforts… and other second-wave projects
Project Description Developer(s) Update
With Glaxo involvement…    
CoVLP Plant-derived coronavirus-like particle (2 doses) Medicago/Glaxo  Ph2 data published via preprint; Ph3 started Mar 2021 enrolling in Canada, US, UK, Brazil
Covid-19 vaccine project Recombinant protein (2 doses)  Sanofi/Glaxo  Ph2 data shows strong immune responses (PR only); Ph3 to start mid-year. 
CVnCoV mRNA (2 doses) Curevac (Glaxo to support manufacturing and co-develop next-gen multi-valent candidates) Herald, Europe ph3, due to report Q2'21; preclinical data published on next-gen project (preprint).
NVX-CoV2373 Recombinant nanoparticle (2 doses) Novavax (Glaxo to support manufacture of 60m doses for UK)  Data reported from UK ph3 & S Africa ph2b trials; US/Mexico ph3 data due Q2 2021
GBP510 Nanoparticle (2 doses)  SK Bioscience (Glaxo providing adjuvant)  Phase 1/2 ongoing.
Other second wave projects…   
Covaxin  Inactivated virus (2 doses) Bharat Biotech/Ocugen Data from ph3 India trial reported Apr 2021
Ad5-nCoV Adenovirus type 5 (1 dose) Cansino Biologics Ph3 recruiting in Russia & S America
ZyCoV-D DNA (3 doses) Zydus Cadila Ph3 ongoing in India
COVID-19 S-Trimer Trimerised fusion protein (2 doses)  Clover/Dynavax Ph2/3 OUS Spectra trial started Mar 2021
VLA2001 Inactivated virus (2 doses) Valneva/Dynavax Ph3 UK Cov-Compare study vs Astra's Vaxzevria started Apr 2021
INO-4800 DNA (2 doses) Inovio Ph2 data disappointed (preprint); Ph3 due to start in Q2 2021, pending lifting of FDA hold
ARCT-021 Self-amplifying mRNA (1 dose) Arcturus Ph3 planned for Q2 2021 pending results from ph2 trial
Note: includes notable projects already progressed into phase 2/3 development or likely to do so imminently. List not exhaustive. Source: Evaluate Pharma & company statements.

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