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(This is a high level review about a leading, local and international virus and immunization company, EpiVax)
Unless you have been
in a media blackout these past two weeks, you are well aware of the latest
public health threat: 2019-nCoV.
This new strain of
coronavirus is currently linked to nearly thirty
thousand infections and rising fatalities in China, and
additional cases have been brought to other areas of the world. by air
Here’s the EpiVax perspective:
Is it worse than SARS?
That’s hard to say. Younger people may be more resilient, but a reported 25-30% of cases require intensive care. In truth, we don’t know because we don’t have the denominators (number of infected, number recovering), we only have the available daily updates on the situation which are available here.
Isn’t it just like the common cold?
Afterall, the common
cold is caused by coronaviruses. That would be nice, but, no. Our analysis of
the conservation of T cell epitopes found in currently circulating strains of
coronaviruses with the novel 2019 n-COV shows poor conservation of T cell
epitopes (at left), this is also true for other coronaviruses like SARS, MERS,
etc, at right. That’s why this virus is going to be far worse than the common
cold or the flu. (For medical updates see here).
Can you make a vaccine
Yes we can. And, because it is an RNA virus, has the opportunity to ‘go stealth‘ due to the mutability of its genome, making it a bit more difficult. But we are working swiftly, under the direction of EpiVax Vaccine Director, Dr. Lenny Moise, to develop a computational plan of attack. Important to note – it has human-like sequences that may abrogate immune response. Like HIV. Like HCV. See below a JanusMatrix analysis of the 2019-nCOV spike protein and read see our blog post here
EpiVax is an immunology company and has developed comprehensive
analytical capabilities in the field of computational immunology.
We are dedicated to applying our tools (in-silico, in-vitro and
in-vivo) to re-engineering therapeutic proteins and to designing new
We leverage our proprietary tools and expertise, thereby adding value
to our clients’ research and development efforts while applying them to
our own pipeline of therapeutic proteins and vaccine candidates.
EpiVax understands the scientific, financial, and regulatory challenges faced by today’s pharmaceutical industry and applies this knowledge at every step from design, to execution, and to IND.
About Anne (Annie) S. De Groot, M.D.
Founder, CEO & CSO, EpiVax, Inc
De Groot is internationally known for her research on the human immune
system’s response to vaccines and therapeutics. She graduated from Smith
College in 1978 and earned her medical degree at University of Chicago
in 1983. After internal medical residency, she obtained advanced
training in immunoinformatics and vaccinology with Michael Good, Russell
Howard and Jay Berzofsky at the National Institutes of Health, and then
returned for a fellowship in ID at New England Medical Center.
For more information, go to: https://epivax.com