Aphios Awarded United States Patent for Vaccines for HIV/AIDS, Influenza and Other Infectious Diseases
May 09, 2006
Woburn, MA — Aphios Corporation today announced that it has been awarded United States Patent No. 7,033, 813 for vaccines for AIDS, influenza and other infectious diseases.

Vaccination is the most cost-effective tool for the control and prevention of infectious diseases. This could be true for HIV/AIDS that is running rampant throughout the world infecting more than 40 million people and killing 20 million worldwide. Unfortunately, most attempts to develop a safe and effective HIV/AIDS vaccine over the last two decades have failed.

In Aphios' vaccine technology, HIV virions are filled with SuperFluids, which are critical, supercritical or near-critical fluids with or without polar cosolvents. When compressed, these fluids exhibit enhanced thermodynamic properties of penetration, solvation and expansion. The overfilled virions are then rapidly expanded and rupture at their weakest points. The HIV virions are rendered non-infective while preserving overall tertiary structure, protein integrity and antigenicity. Viral proteins, in particular gp120 and nucleocapsid proteins, are retained in their native and functional state. Viruses are inactivated by a purely physical mechanism unlike traditional methods that utilize chemicals that can cross-link and render protein epitopes less effective. This technology is rapid, inactivating more than 6 logs (one million virions per milliliter) of most viruses in less than 20 seconds. Vaccine preparations can include a combination of different HIV clades and strains to generate the broadest immune response possible. The vaccine manufacturing technology is scalable, cost-effective and broadly applicable to other viral pathogens such as hepatitis and influenza.

Preparation is underway in the United States and abroad to develop technologies and vaccines to avert a worldwide flu pandemic should the H5N1 bird flu mutate into a form that allows human-to-human transfer. Such a pandemic can have serious consequences to human health with estimated death tolls in the tens of millions.

Most of the influenza vaccines currently utilized are trivalent vaccines consisting of two of the predominant influenza A strains that were circulating during the prior years' flu season and influenza B. These viral strains are typically chemically inactivated, a process that cross-links protein epitopes and adversely impacts the efficacy of viral antigens. In these trivalent vaccines, residual chemicals have to be removed to minimize adverse health effects. Current influenza vaccines are about 70-90% effective in preventing illness in healthy younger adults, 50-80% effective in preventing influenza-related hospitalizations and death in the elderly, and only 30-50% effective in preventing influenza-like illness in frail elderly. By physically inactivating the influenza virus utilizing SuperFluids CFI, an improved influenza vaccine can be prepared for current circulating and potentially pandemic strains of the influenza virus.

Aphios Corporation is a biopharmaceutical company that is developing enhanced therapeutics and biologics for health maintenance, disease prevention and the treatment of human diseases with a focus on infectious diseases, oncology and quality-of-life medicines.