Singapore clinical trials for Arcturus and Duke-NUS’ vaccine candidate

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Singapore’s Health Sciences Authority has approved clinical trials for a coronavirus vaccine candidate being developed by Arcturus Therapeutics and Duke-NUS Medical school.

Arcturus, a San Diego, California-based biopharmaceutical company, in partnership with Singapore’s Duke-NUS said they will begin human dosing tests as soon as possible.

In a joint statement, the company and medical school said the volunteer study would include up to 108 adults and would examine several dose levels.

Ahead of Arcturus and Duke-NUS’ announcement, there were more than 140 candidate vaccines in pre-clinical evaluation and 24 in clinical evaluation, according to the World Health Organization.

In its preclinical data, researchers found that a single 0.2, 2 or 10 microgram dose resulted in neutralizing antibodies continuing to increase over 50 days. They tested for antibodies in mouse serum every 10 days after vaccination for a 60-day period.

Professor Ooi Eng Eong, deputy director of the emerging infectious diseases program at Duke-NUS, said in a statement, citing preliminary data, that “a single dose of this vaccine may be sufficient to trigger robust and durable immune responses.”

Arcturus President and CEO Joseph Payne similarly suggested, citing the preclinical data, “a potential single administration, at very low doses” triggers an immune response.

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