AAHI is developing the first vaccine against amebiasis, a disease caused by a parasite called Entamoeba histolytica. This microscopic parasite thrives in human intestines and is transmitted by exposure to infested human feces. It is prevalent in areas of the world with poor sanitation, where food, drinking water, and surfaces may be contaminated with the parasitic eggs. Amebiasis causes stomach pain and bloody stools, but without proper antibiotics, may become life-threatening. In areas of extreme poverty where most cases occur, amebiasis kills approximately fifty-five thousand victims every year.
AAHI scientists are working with the University of Virginia, TechLab, the University of Alberta, and 3M to develop a nasal spray amebiasis vaccine candidate with the support of the National Institute of Health (HHSN272201800025C). The vaccine, administered as a nasal spray, induces a mucosal immune response, which may provide more effective protection against a disease that resides in the intestine. The vaccine is administered by a liquid atomization device.
The amebiasis vaccine candidate combines AAHI’s GLA-3M-052-LS adjuvant formulation with the LecA protein antigen developed by the University of Virginia and TechLab to create a synthetic vaccine. AAHI’s adjuvant formulation uses liposomes, spherical lipid particles, to deliver two different adjuvant molecules – AAHI’s GLA and 3M’s 3M-052. Each of these adjuvant molecules trigger different aspects of the immune system to enhance the protection provided by the vaccine. The anatomical deposition of the nasally sprayed vaccine formulation is characterized by the University of Alberta.
This first-ever amebiasis vaccine is anticipated to enter clinical trials in 2024.