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GeoVax Chief Scientific Officer to Deliver Two Talks at World Vaccine Congress
Presentations Will Focus on the Broad Utility of GeoVax’s Vaccine Platform
Against Emerging Infectious Diseases and Cancer
GeoVax Labs, Inc. (OTCQB: GOVX), a biotechnology company developing human vaccines, announced that its Chief Scientific Officer, Farshad Guirakhoo, PhD, will deliver two talks during the World Vaccine Congress Europe in Barcelona on October 11 and 12.
Dr. Guirakhoo’s first presentation on October 11 is entitled “Use of MVA-VLP Platform for Development of Vaccines for Infectious Diseases and Cancer.” During this talk, Dr. Guirakhoo will discuss GeoVax’s vaccine platform which utilizes its novel recombinant Modified Vaccinia Ankara (MVA) vector to express foreign antigens on virus-like particles (VLPs) in the person being vaccinated. The MVA-VLP platform has several advantages including the ability to use single inoculations to achieve protection. In studies for Ebola, Lassa and Zika vaccines, a single dose of GeoVax’s vaccine fully protected animals against a lethal challenge. This was a severe test of immunity since the lethal dose of the virus (e.g. Lassa and Zika) was delivered directly into the brain of normal (immunocompetent) mice.
During his talk, Dr. Guirakhoo will also present preclinical data on GeoVax’s therapeutic cancer vaccine program, used in combination with checkpoint inhibitors, demonstrating the broad utility of the platform beyond infectious diseases. GeoVax’s cancer vaccine is based on nearly full sequence of human tumor-associated antigen (TAA) MUC1 and is being investigated in combination with a synthetic vaccine developed by ViaMune, Inc. GeoVax and ViaMune are collaborating with the goal of developing a tumor MUC1 vaccine that (a) unlike the majority of peptide vaccines is not restricted to limited numbers of HLA types, (b) expresses hypoglycosylated forms of MUC1, found in several types of cancer tumors, and (c) is delivered in the form of VLPs resulting in a broad spectrum of anti-tumor antibody and T cell responses. Preliminary results from two studies indicate that a combination vaccine approach increases the activity of immune checkpoint inhibitor therapy, suggesting this is a viable approach and encouraging further investigation. The studies were performed by the laboratory of Dr. Pinku Mukherjee, PhD, at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
Dr. Guirakhoo’s second presentation will be delivered on October 12 and is entitled “Development of a Novel Vaccine for Zika that Does Not Bear the Potential Risk of Inducing ADE.” During this talk, Dr. Guirakhoo will discuss GeoVax’s development of a safe and effective vaccine against Zika virus (ZIKV), a global health concern. Dr. Guirakhoo will describe how the GeoVax MVA platform is used to express the NS1 protein, the most abundant non-structural protein in the ZIKV, which is a target for both antibody and T cell mediated immunity. The MVA-NS1 vaccine induced both humoral and cellular immunity and uniquely provided 100% protection in mice against a lethal intracranial challenge with ZIKV. Because NS1 is not a surface protein on the virions, it does not face the theoretical concern of Antibody Dependent Enhancement (ADE) of infection.
GeoVax Labs, Inc., is a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing human vaccines against infectious diseases using its MVA-VLP vaccine platform. The Company’s development programs are focused on vaccines against HIV, Zika, hemorrhagic fever viruses (Ebola, Sudan, Marburg, Lassa) and malaria. GeoVax also is evaluating the use of its MVA-VLP platform in cancer immunotherapy, and for therapeutic use in chronic Hepatitis B infections. GeoVax’s vaccine platform supports in vivo production of non-infectious VLPs from the cells of the very person receiving the vaccine. The production of VLPs in the person being vaccinated mimics virus production in a natural infection, stimulating both the humoral and cellular arms of the immune system to recognize, prevent, and control the target infection. For more information, visit www.geovax.com.
Certain statements in this document are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act. These statements are based on management's current expectations and are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances. Actual results may differ materially from those included in these statements due to a variety of factors, including whether: GeoVax can develop and manufacture its vaccines with the desired characteristics in a timely manner, GeoVax's vaccines will be safe for human use, GeoVax's vaccines will effectively prevent targeted infections in humans, GeoVax’s vaccines will receive regulatory approvals necessary to be licensed and marketed, GeoVax raises required capital to complete vaccine development, there is development of competitive products that may be more effective or easier to use than GeoVax's products, GeoVax will be able to enter into favorable manufacturing and distribution agreements, and other factors, over which GeoVax has no control. GeoVax assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements, and does not intend to do so. More information about these factors is contained in GeoVax's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission including those set forth at "Risk Factors" in GeoVax's Form 10-K.