Calixar puts the 'je ne sais quoi' into flu vaccine production

By Dan Stanton

- Last updated on GMT

Tech platform makes influenza vaccine six time more effective

Related tags Influenza vaccine Flu vaccine

French biotech Calixar has developed a tech platform process it says makes flu vaccines six times more effective in terms of immunogenicity than others on the market.

Calixar teamed up with VirPath - an academic laboratory of the University Claude Bernard Lyon 1 and the Civil Hospitals of Lyon, France – to develop the platform and the egg-derived antigens formulation of their first vaccine, directed against the A H1N1 virus has been shown to be six times more active than the marketed vaccines, in terms of hemagglutinin immunogenicity and in vivo protection.

According to CEO Emmanuel Dejean, the platform improves standard influenza vaccine manufacturing through the firm’s specific chemistry, modifying the chemical environment of membrane proteins and stabilizing their conformation during extraction.

“Commercialized vaccines are composed of splits of 3 or 4 different virus membrane splits, trivalent or quadrivalent vaccine, respectively,”​ he told

“Our process improves the membrane splitting by better preserving antigens conformation than other classical detergents currently being used in vaccine manufacturing,”​ he continued. “Subsequently, antigens functionality, immunogenicity and protective property are reinforced.”

The company is looking at licensing out the technology to vaccine makers early next year, and Dejean added Calixar and VirPath are already in contact with key pharmaceutical companies for both influenza vaccines and a broader spectrum of candidates. 

There are a number of influenza vaccines already on the market including offerings from GlaxoSmithKline​, Protein Sciences​, and Takeda​,  all of which are cultured in chicken eggs. However, Novartis​ recently began shipping its vaccine Flucelvax, the only flu vaccine to be cell-culture based.

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