VAXIN CHANGES COMPANY NAME TO ALTIMMUNE
Move Reflects Company’s Expansion beyond Vaccines to Include Immunotherapeutics
Gaithersburg, Maryland – Sept 1st 2015- Vaxin Inc., a clinical stage immunotherapy and vaccine company, today announced that it has changed its corporate name to Altimmune, Inc. Vaxin was founded in 1997 to pioneer new-generation vaccine technologies and products. Since then, the company has achieved steady success, developing promising vaccine candidates for biodefense and other public health needs, as well as animal health. In a strategic growth move earlier this year, the company acquired UK-based Immune Targeting Systems (ITS) and added prominent new investors to its syndicate. The acquisition vaulted Vaxin into the immunotherapeutics sector, growing its therapeutics expertise, expanding its market, and broadening its global footprint. The new name marks the next chapter for the newly combined company.
“The Vaxin brand has served as a superb ambassador of our vaccine product family, but the expansion of our product platform calls for a new brand,” said president and CEO, Bill Enright. “The name Altimmune reflects the novel solutions we bring to the broader biotech marketplace today. Bold emphasis on the immune system is intentional; it speaks to alternative therapies that stimulate immune responses for prevention and treatment of diseases. With some of today’s most exciting research discoveries happening in this area, our new name conveys a promise to deliver essential innovation to the space.”
Beyond a Vaccine Company
The company name change marks a high point for Altimmune. Last month, the company initiated a first-in-man phase I clinical trial of HepTcell™ (FP-02.2), an immunotherapeutic compound to treat and potentially cure, people chronically infected with the hepatitis B virus (HBV). Patient enrollment has begun for the multi-center trial to be conducted at seven sites in the United Kingdom. The study aims to recruit 72 patients with chronic HBV infection.
The clinical trial initiation augments rising momentum for Altimmune’s vaccine products. In its latest success, the company demonstrated in pre-clinical studies that a single intranasal vaccination with its NasoShield™ anthrax vaccine was non-inferior to the protection conferred by two vaccinations of the currently licensed Anthrax Vaccine Absorbed (AVA; BioThrax®). Intranasal delivery is generally believed to be a superior vaccination route because the mucosal immune response has been shown to be important for protection, particularly against respiratory pathogens. Importantly, NasoShield produced protective immunity with earlier onset and greater persistence than AVA, suggesting that NasoShield may offer both rapid and long-lasting protection with just a single dose. The study results were published in the April 2015 issue of the prestigious journal, Clinical Vaccine Immunology.
Altimmune is headquartered in Gaithersburg, Maryland, with operating sites in the UK and France.
Altimmune is a clinical stage biotechnology company developing next-generation immunotherapeutics and vaccines to address significant public health and biodefense needs. By leveraging specific attributes of its two independent and complementary platform technologies, Altimmune can rapidly design product candidates against a wide range of disease targets, including respiratory diseases, chronic infections, and cancer. Our Densigen™ T-cell platform technology is uniquely suited to direct the immune response against traditionally difficult disease targets, including chronic infections and cancer, by directing an individual’s immune system against multiple target antigens instead of just one. Altimmune’s RespirVec™ platform utilizes convenient needle-free intranasal delivery to achieve broad immunity against disease pathogens more rapidly than conventional vaccines. Altimmune’s product candidates are easily manufactured, highly stable, and provide a safe, effective alternative to current products. www.altimmune.com.
President and CEO