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Novavax begins phase 2 trial for combo influenza-COVID jab

Novavax announced this week that it has initiated the phase 2 trial evaluating the safety and efficacy of the COVID-19-Influenza Combination (CIC) jab in adults aged 50 through 80.

The vaccine, called NVX-CoV2373, is a quadrivalent influenza vaccine candidate that uses Novavax’s own Matrix-M adjuvant. The jab is engineered with the genetic sequence of the first strain of SARS-CoV-2 as well as circulating influenza strains.

Previous phase 1/2 trial results, shared in October,  had demonstrated the vaccine’s ability to generate immune responses, both of antibodies and CD4+ T-cells. Results from the phase 2 randomized, observer-blinded trial are expected mid-year 2023.

CIC is packaged as a ready-to-use liquid formulation in a vial containing ten doses, and each patient is given two 0.5 ml doses intramuscularly 21 days apart. Unlike other COVID vaccines that require ultra-cold freezing and storing, CIC can be stored at 2°- 8° Celsius.

As for manufacturing for CIC, Novavax will continue to leverage its current partnerships, including its collaboration with the Serum Institute of India, the largest vaccine manufacturer by volume in the world.

Novavax fell behind other drugmakers in the COVID vaccine race after dealing with manufacturing and trial recruitment hurdles. The drugmaker finally snagged emergency use authorization for its COVID jab, Adjuvanted, this past summer.