Available Technologies

Browse Penn-owned technologies available for licensing.

HOME SEARCH RSS FEED

Naturally derived vaccine adjuvant and immunostimulant for use in humans and animals

Description:

Unique RNA molecule derived from defective viral genomes containing potent immunostimulatory and adjuvant properties

 

Problem:

The vaccine industry is steadily moving away from live-attenuated and whole-pathogen products, mostly due to safety concerns. As this trend continues, there is a need for new adjuvants in the marketplace to help boost the immunogenicity of the modern vaccine. For 70 years, the only approved adjuvant was aluminum, whose mechanism of action is still unknown. Over the years, many other adjuvants have been proposed but most have failed to be successful, at least in humans, due to toxicity, cost and stability.

 

Solution:

Dr. Lopez has optimized a short RNA motif (DDO) contained in naturally occurring replication defective viral genomes which contains exceptional immunostimulatory activity. This motif is stable, short in length, lacks the ability to replicate and is easily produced. DDOs can be modified, and transferred to other RNAs and vaccine viral vectors to enhance their activity. In addition, it can be combined with delivery/depot adjuvants for enhanced activity and targeting.

 

While most classical adjuvants largely target the Toll-like receptor signaling pathway, the DDO operates through a distinct molecular pathway. This feature allows for the molecule to be used either singly or in combination with a traditional adjuvant for a synergistic effect. Taken together, this unique molecule is versatile in its applications and robust in its immunostimulatory capacity making it an ideal vaccine adjuvant.

 

Inventor: 

Dr. Carolina Lopez (http://www.lopezlab.org/)

 

Advantages:

  • Stable
  • Cost-effective
  • Multiple delivery mechanisms
  • Activates a non-Toll receptor signaling pathway
  • Can be used alone or in combination with other adjuvants

Stage of Development:

Demonstrated in vivo and in vitro

 

Intellectual Property:

PCT Pending

 

Reference Media:

  • Xu et al. mBio, 2015 Oct 6; 6(5):e01265-15
  • Mercado-Lopez et al. Vaccine, 2013 Nov 19; 31(48): 5713-5721

Desired Partnerships: 

Co-development

 

Docket # 15-7499

 

Download PDF

 


Patent Information:
For Information, Contact:
Melissa Kelly
Associate Director
University of Pennsylvania
215-898-9877
kellymel@upenn.edu
Inventors:
Carolina Lopez
Keywords: