Currently very few new challenge agents are being manufactured to test potential antiviral drugs and vaccines in a controlled environment. Governmental organisations, consortiums and collaborative ventures are looking for opportunities to test new prophylactics and therapeutics in controlled human infection studies but are hampered by the lack of free access to effective challenge agents.
Challenge agents also tend to be owned by specialist CROs or governmental agencies creating strong competition for slots in the associated human challenge units.
In addition, many of the current challenge agents show elements of attenuation relating to the method of manufacture. This means that prognostic data obtained from such viruses is potentially overly positive or in some cases statistically irrelevant due to poor attack rates and/or shedding profiles.
Our goal is to offer the optimal balance between virulence and pathology; to develop challenge agents with high attack rates, consistent vAUC and class leading symptom profiles.
Our challenge agents will be manufactured according to proven principles, maintaining wild type properties by amplifying community acquired virus with minimal passages, limited freeze / thaw cycles and reduced time from manufacture to aliquot.