Vaccination is one of the most effective and cost-effective medical interventions there are. Preventing disease if possible is something we all strive for. Being healthy is the most important thing in life. Diarrheal diseases, respiratory infections, malaria, HIV / AIDS and TB are infectious diseases that globally harvest the most casualties. More than one million children under five die every year from diarrheal diseases. Our vision is to successfully develop a vaccine that could save hundred thousands of lives in the Third World, but also can save the holiday for millions of travelers, says Björn Sjöstrand, CEO of Scandinavian Biopharma.
To be able to bring down mortality rates in the world for children under five, we need to generate more and better vaccines against a variety of diseases. Toxin-producing E.coli (ETEC-Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli) infection is one of the most common causes of diarrhea among children in developing countries. Traveler’s diarrhea is the same disease, and is also the most common infectious disease among travelers to tropical countries. Today there is no ETEC vaccine available to address these unmet needs.
Scandinavian Biopharma is one of few Swedish research-based biotech companies. The company is also a leading distributor of vaccines and immunoglobulin’s to the Nordic market.
– We develop together with the American global health non-profit organization, PATH Vaccine Solutions and researchers at the University of Gothenburg, a new travelers’ diarrhea vaccine, an oral ETEC vaccine. The vaccine consists of a mixture of inactivated ETEC bacteria and a toxoid protein.
A recently conducted clinical Phase I study showed impressive results where all primary endpoints were exceeded. In several clinical trials, the vaccine has been proven safe and shown a much better ability to activate the immune system than expected. A proof that we are on the right path, that our vaccine is of very high standard and with the potential to safe lives in the Third World, is that we get grants from PATH, an important partner of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for the development of new vaccines in the field of diarrheal diseases for developing countries.
It requires further study, but so far the development of this vaccine to prevent and control ETEC-related illness and mortality among infants and young children living in ETEC-endemic areas, as well as to prevent ETEC-associated travelers’ diarrhea occurring among international travelers, looks very promising.