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Self-Amplifying RNA SARS-CoV-2 Lipid Nanoparticle: a Promising Vaccine Prospect

By 11th September 2020No Comments

The following study was conducted by Scientists from Department of Infectious Diseases, Imperial College London, Norfolk Place, London, UK; Acuitas Therapeutics, Vancouver, BC, Canada. Study is published in Nature Communications Journal as detailed below

Nature Communications; Volume 11, Article Number: 3523; (2020)

Self-Amplifying RNA SARS-CoV-2 Lipid Nanoparticle Vaccine Candidate Induces High Neutralizing Antibody Titers in Mice


The spread of the SARS-CoV-2 into a global pandemic within a few months of onset motivates the development of a rapidly scalable vaccine. Here, we present a self-amplifying RNA encoding the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein encapsulated within a lipid nanoparticle (LNP) as a vaccine. We observe remarkably high and dose-dependent SARS-CoV-2 specific antibody titers in mouse sera, as well as robust neutralization of both a pseudo-virus and wild-type virus. Upon further characterization we find that the neutralization is proportional to the quantity of specific IgG and of higher magnitude than recovered COVID-19 patients. saRNA LNP immunizations induce a Th1-biased response in mice, and there is no antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE) observed. Finally, we observe high cellular responses, as characterized by IFN-γ production, upon re-stimulation with SARS-CoV-2 peptides. These data provide insight into the vaccine design and evaluation of immunogenicity to enable rapid translation to the clinic.


Nature Communications



McKay, P. F., K. Hu, et al. (2020). “Self-amplifying RNA SARS-CoV-2 lipid nanoparticle vaccine candidate induces high neutralizing antibody titers in mice.” Nature Communications 11(1): 3523.