In-house efforts to boost vaccines
As a silent but necessary partner, adjuvants can't be ignored by biotech vaccine developers who have to choose among competing candidates to provide the immune stimulant required to make the vaccines work.
Adjuvant developers Cambridge Biotech Corp. (CBCX), CytRx Corp. (CYTR) and Ribi ImmunoChem Research Inc. (RIBI) are adding proprietary products to the short list of non-proprietary compounds, which they hope become the adjuvants of choice for as many vaccines as possible.
But competition is complicated by the fact that many vaccine companies also are working on their own adjuvants for in-house use. Companies in that category include Chiron Corp. (CHIR), MedImmune Inc. (MEDI) and Genelabs Technologies Inc. (GNLB).
In addition, compounds such as liposomes also have potential as adjuvants. The Liposome Co.'s TLC A-60 is being tested as part of a research collaboration with Merck in an HIV vaccine being developed with Repligen Corp. (RGEN). Wyeth-Ayerst has licensed it for use in