August 8, 2016
Building Bioscience

Yale’s next vaccine platform

John Rose, professor of pathology at Yale University and director of its molecular virology program, is the man behind the science on which CaroGen's "virus-like vesicle" (VLV) vaccine platform is based.

Vaccines are complex, but Rose said the best way to think of the experimental therapeutic platform is as a hybrid of two types of vaccines — a live virus-based vaccine, such as the Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccine, and an inactivated or "killed" vaccine, like the common influenza vaccine.

CaroGen says VLVs activate an immune response that could be more effective in children, the elderly and the immune-compromised.

Rose has been studying VLV for years. He first published a paper on the platform in the mid-1990s.

But in the years that followed, his attention was focused on a separate vaccine platform, which was eventually used to create an Ebola vaccine candidate.

"So ... the (VLV) technology was really on the back burner, and we went back to it because we had pushed (the Ebola vaccine) about as far as we could," Rose said.

In 2008, Rose published a paper showing that VLVs could be a useful vaccine technology. He's since filed for several other related patents.

Rose said there are still plenty of challenges ahead both, financial and scientific to get the vaccine to its next stage of development.

"Therapeutic vaccines are not easy," he said. "Getting the funding is not easy."

— Matt Pilon

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