Tag Archive: research

  1. EAVI2020 continues the fight | World AIDS Day 2021

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    For World AIDS Day 2021, the EAVI2020 clinicians and researchers are shedding a light on the EAVI2020 clinical trials that aim to help accelerate the search for an effective HIV vaccine. Every year on 1st December since 1988, World AIDS Day is an international day dedicated to raising awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread of the HIV virus. According to WHO, since the beginning of the pandemic, 36.3 million people have lost their lives and it was estimated that there were 37.7 million people living with HIV at the end of 2020, over two thirds of whom (25.4 million) are in the WHO African Region.

    It is a day to remember those who have perished due to AIDS and that international research projects such as EAVI2020, are continuing the fight to find an effective vaccine for the HIV virus that has so far evaded eradication for the past 30+ years. Learn more about EAVI2020’s clinical trials and what the dedicated consortium of researchers and clinicians aim to achieve.

    Click on each image to find out about EAVI2020’s clinical trials.

    info card on clinical trial HIV-CORE 0051

    HIV-CORE 0051

    info card on clinical trial HIV-CORE 0052

    HIV-CORE 0052

    info card on clinical trial EAVI2020 - 3SM

    EAVI2020-3SM

    info card on clinical trial EAVI2020_01

    EAVI2020-01

    info card on clinical trial BCN03

    BCN03

    Follow World AIDS Day campaigns on Twitter with #Rocktheribbon

    To donate and show your support, go to the National AIDS Trust website

  2. World AIDS DAY Part 4: EAVI2020’s research to a better future | Trial HIV-CORE 0051

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    Hi! I am Trial HIV-CORE 0051. I am a phase 1/2a open-label trial to assess the safety and immunogenicity of candidate T-cell vaccines ChAdOx1.HTI and MVA.HTI given sequentially to healthy HIV-1/2 negative adult volunteers at the Jenner Institute, University of Oxford. Our trial aims to establish the initial safety and immunogenicity of the candidate on the path towards a preventive use of this strategy and is complemented by a series of HIV cure trials in early-treated PLWH.

    The HIV-CORE 0051 team including Dr Paola Cicconi (Principal Investigator) Prof Tomáš Hanke (Non-Clinical Principal Investigator), Dr Nicola Borthwick and Dr Edmund Wee (Immunology Laboratory Leads) and trial managers Dr Alison Crook and Ms Molly Glaze along with the many other team members that make up the HIV-CORE 0051 Trial team, in close collaboration with AELIX.

    The trial evaluates a candidate T-cell vaccine, which are being developed by a biotech company, AELIX Therapeutics. The regimen utilizes a prime with engineered replication-deficient simian (chimpanzee) adenovirus vector ChAdOx1 followed by a heterologous boost with a replication-deficient poxvirus vector called MVA. Both vectors deliver protein HTI (HIVACAT T-cell Immunogen) designed to generate protective HIV-1-specific T-cell targeting vulnerable sites of HIV-1. The HTI design was informed by human data, whereby the HTI-specific T cells were associated with better viral control in more than 1,000 people living with HIV-1 (PLWH) within a broad HLA class I and class II allele coverage. The immunogen was designed by the team led by Professor Christian Brander and Dr Beatriz Mothe at the Institut de Recerca de la Sida – IrsiCaixa in Barcelona.

    For the last decade, the HIV vaccine development has been almost entirely preoccupied with antibody-based protection, while the T-cell vaccines have been sadly ignored. It is only recently that highly rational T-cell strategies are being resurrected mainly in the context of HIV cure, where effective killer T cells will likely be key for drug-free HIV remission, perhaps even eradication. Current prevention focuses on behavioural and biomedical interventions and provision of antiretroviral drugs, however, an effective HIV-1 vaccine will help many people beyond the reach of today’s treatment and prevention options. Our trial which is aiming to understand the mechanisms and paths towards induction of protective T cells is therefore highly topical.

    Find out more about the other EAVI2020 trials taking place.

    info card on clinical trial HIV-CORE 0052

    HIV-CORE 0052

    info card on clinical trial EAVI2020 - 3SM

    EAVI2020-3SM

    info card on clinical trial EAVI2020_01

    EAVI2020-01

    info card on clinical trial BCN03

    BCN03

    Follow World AIDS Day campaigns on Twitter with #Rocktheribbon

    To donate and show your support, go to the National AIDS Trust website

    For World AIDS Day 2021, the EAVI2020 clinicians and researchers are shedding a light on the EAVI2020 clinical trials that aim to help accelerate the search for an effective HIV vaccine. Every year on 1st December since 1988, World AIDS Day is an international day dedicated to raising awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread of the HIV virus. According to WHO, since the beginning of the pandemic, 36.3 million people have lost their lives and it was estimated that there were 37.7 million people living with HIV at the end of 2020, over two-thirds of whom (25.4 million) are in the WHO African Region.

    It is a day to remember those who have perished due to AIDS and that international research projects such as EAVI2020, are continuing the fight to find an effective vaccine for the HIV virus that has so far evaded eradication for the past 30+ years. Learn more about EAVI2020’s clinical trials and what the dedicated consortium of researchers and clinicians aim to achieve.

  3. World AIDS DAY Part 5: EAVI2020’s research to a better future | Trial BCN03

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    Hi, I am EAVI2020 trial BCN03. Our trial takes place at IRSICAIXA with Christian Brander (Principal Investigator, IRSICAIXA) Beatriz Mothe (Principal Investigator, IRSICAIXA), working in collaboration with Rogier Sanders (Principal Investigator, AMC) and Dietmar Katinger (Principal Investigator, POLYMUN). Our trial focuses on a combined T- and B-cell, therapeutic HIV vaccine combining the HTI T cell vaccines with SOSIP envelope immunogens.

    Our trial is primarily focusing on the safety of the intervention and whether the intervention can induce sustained virus control once antiretroviral therapy (ART) is stopped. What sets our trial apart is that this is the first therapeutic vaccine trial that combines potent T and B cell immunogens in a combination regimen. We are hoping that this trial will test whether the addition of a B cell immunogen component to a T cell vaccine regimen can improve post-vaccination virus control compared to a single component regimen.

    Find out more about the other EAVI2020 trials taking place

    info card on clinical trial HIV-CORE 0051

    HIV-CORE 0051

    info card on clinical trial HIV-CORE 0052

    HIV-CORE 0052

    info card on clinical trial EAVI2020 - 3SM

    EAVI2020-3SM

    info card on clinical trial EAVI2020_01

    EAVI2020-01

    Follow World AIDS Day campaigns on Twitter with #Rocktheribbon

    To donate and show your support, go to the National AIDS Trust website

    For World AIDS Day 2021, the EAVI2020 clinicians and researchers are shedding a light on the EAVI2020 clinical trials that aim to help accelerate the search for an effective HIV vaccine. Every year on 1st December since 1988, World AIDS Day is an international day dedicated to raising awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread of the HIV virus. According to WHO, since the beginning of the pandemic, 36.3 million people have lost their lives and it was estimated that there were 37.7 million people living with HIV at the end of 2020, over two-thirds of whom (25.4 million) are in the WHO African Region.

    It is a day to remember those who have perished due to AIDS and that international research projects such as EAVI2020, are continuing the fight to find an effective vaccine for the HIV virus that has so far evaded eradication for the past 30+ years. Learn more about EAVI2020’s clinical trials and what the dedicated consortium of researchers and clinicians aim to achieve.

  4. EAVI2020 Students in Focus: Alessandra Gallinaro from the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS) in Italy.

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    profile photo of Alessandra Gallinaro

    My name is Alessandra Gallinaro and I am a Postdoc Researcher at the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (ISS) in Rome, Italy.

    The road to my PhD

    Whilst studying Medical Biotechnology at “La Sapienza” University in Rome I was captivated by virology and immunology. I have been involved in the HIV field since obtaining my Bachelor’s Degree, during which I worked alongside clinicians studying drug resistance in patients being treated with HAART. After a fellowship at the Italian National AIDS Centre, in 2014 I transferred to Dr. Andrea Cara’s lab (ISS) where I am still located.

    Last year, I achieved my PhD in Experimental Medicine, in collaboration with the University “La Sapienza” in Rome. My PhD project focused on the development of an HIV-vaccine using Integrase Defective Lentiviral Vectors (IDLVs) as a delivery platform. As immunogens, we selected two of the EAVI2020 antigens to induce cellular immune response and IDLVs expressing UFOs antigens to elicit broadly neutralising antibodies (bNAbs).

    Being part of EAVI2020’s Training Programme

    In the last four years, I have been part of EAVI2020’s Education and Training programme. I attended a majority of the courses and found them very beneficial in broadening my knowledge and understanding regarding various aspects of the research in order to develop an effective vaccine against HIV: B- and T-cell immunity, rational design of vaccine candidates, use of different vaccine delivery systems, animal models.

    We were given the chance to visit the animal facilities in Paris and I thoroughly enjoyed the wet workshop in Madrid where I gained knowledge of how to characterise neutralising antibodies. It was also very fascinating to understand how industrial production of protein vaccines is made with GMP procedures at the Polymun Scientific in Vienna.

    Thanks to EAVI2020 training courses and annual meetings, I had the possibility to write abstracts, create scientific posters, and present my project’s progression. I have been given the great opportunity to improve my skills, both orally and in written communication and to share data and ideas amongst other students and PIs.

    EAVI2020 annual meetings were ideal in acquiring contacts and collaborations with the EAVI partners. Furthermore, interaction and an exchange of views with some of the most important people within the field of HIV research was very invigorating. I learned the importance of a scientific community, in which everyone collaborates making available its own expertise and resources in order to reach the same goal.

    Looking forward

    In my foreseeable future, I will continue to work within Andrea Cara’s team, striving to implement IDLV platform for UFOs antigens to further increase its immunogenicity.

    Outside the lab

    When out of my workplace, I like spending time with my family and friends and I enjoy a relaxing stroll along the promenade. I love travelling and I’m also a fan of detective series and mystery books.

     

  5. EAVI2020 Students in Focus: Philipp Mundsperger (Polymun Scientific, Austria)

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    Let’s meet Philipp Mundsperger.

    photo of Phillipp Mundsperger

    PhD student at Polymun Scientific and the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences in Vienna, Austria

    Hi! My name is Philipp and I am a PhD student at Polymun Scientific and the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences in Vienna, Austria. Within the scope of the EAVI2020 framework, I am found on the industry side of the programme where my colleagues and I have worked on the manufacturing of soluble variants of the HIV-virus envelope glycoprotein (HIV-1 Env) as prospective vaccine antigens. Over the last few years, I have had the opportunity to get to know lots of aspects of vaccine manufacturing, such as the generation of cell lines for the production of vaccine antigens, the production in small and large scale, as well as new methods to ensure quality and safety of the final protein product. Looking back I have to say it was challenging to dig into a very specialised topic in a short amount of time, but that has been the time when I’ve learned the most – professionally and personally. Besides the daily life in the lab, the EAVI2020 PhD training program provided me with the opportunity to attend several training courses and annual consortium meetings, held and organised by partnering institutions.  Stimulating discussions among fellow students and PIs about new ideas or difficulties have made those courses and meetings a great source of motivation to put my own work in the context of the bigger picture of EAVI2020. After graduating I plan to find a job in industry, since I love to work at the interface between applied science and application. Especially now, that I am approaching the final phase of my PhD I am feeling grateful that I have had the chance to get involved with the EAVI2020 community – a truly amazing and inspiring group of people, both in terms of scientific excellence and collaborating efforts.

  6. EAVI2020 Students in Focus: Nathifa Moyo (University of Oxford, UK)

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    It’s that time again to shine a light on EAVI2020’s students. So put up your feet, turn off the barrage of incoming COVID-19 news and let’s meet Nathifa Moyo.

    Written by Nathifa Moyo

    Profile photo of Nathifa Moyo

    Nathifa is a Senior Postdoctoral Immunologist at University of Oxford focussing on Studies on HIV-1 vaccine development

    My research within EAVI2020 is based at the Jenner Institute, University of Oxford, UK. There, as a Postdoctoral Immunologist in the laboratory of Professor Tomáš Hanke, my work is dedicated to performing in-depth analyses of vaccine-elicited responses in individuals and small animal models vaccinated with novel T cell-based immunogens. Multiple vectors for antigen delivery, such as simian (chimpanzee) adenovirus (ChAdOx1) and new technologies like mRNA, are being assessed to determine if these systems can enhance cellular immune responses.

    Initially, being a part of such a large consortium was challenging, as most projects aim to induce antibody-mediated immunity and my work aims to induce T-cell immunity. However, opportunities to participate in annual meetings offered knowledge exchange leading to a successful collaboration with consortium partners BioNTech and highlighted how all projects complement one another to ultimately achieve EAVI2020’s objectives.

    The early-stage career training programmes have been extremely rewarding and offered diverse topics with hands-on experience. These include GMP vaccine production at the Biotech company Polymun Scientific in Vienna, pre-clinical non-human primate studies at the CEA in Paris and assessing antibody-mediated responses at the Instituto de Salud Carlos III in Madrid. Collectively, they provided a greater understanding of how vaccines are progressed in an iterative process leading to the translation of the best strategies to clinics. To experience different research environments and learn from the experts in those labs have been tremendous and have inspired new research ideas. The generosity of staff, who gave their time to conduct these courses, has filled me with immense gratitude. To those students/postdocs considering similar programmes, please know that the benefits will be invaluable.

    It is hoped that my career will continue to advance within this field, incorporating host-pathogen interaction studies to improve vaccine design. The accomplishments of the consortium should be applauded and demonstrates that the collective efforts of the scientific community can have a greater impact.

    ——————————–

    Throughout the past four years, the students of EAVI2020 have worked tirelessly in The Continuing Education & Training in HIV vaccine development programme. This is a work package of the EAVI2020 project dedicated to the employment and training of young scientists in Europe. It comprises of scientific fellowships, student exchange, wet workshops, and a PhD Programme to maximise the training of the next generation of young scientists in the field of vaccine development. It is now time we shine a positive spotlight on the students to hear from them about their experience in the programme, lessons learned, and what they hope to achieve moving beyond EAVI2020s. ‘EAVI2020 Students in Focus’ will be a regular news feature so be sure to subscribe to the EAVI2020 newsletter to get the latest updates.  In this issue, we feature.

  7. Online ePanel discussion and SciTalk presentations on HIV research with EAVI2020 partners

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    The eAccess Meetings project

    In 2016, The Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise and Keystone Symposia inaugurated a collaboration to produce an ePanel discussion and series of SciTalks presentations that brought together key experts in the HIV prevention vaccine field.

    Following the great response to the inaugural video series, to which EAVI2020 also contributed with two presentations, the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise in collaboration with Keystone Symposia has now presented the second series of eAccess Meetings: 2017 Keystone Symposia on HIV Vaccines.

    EAVI2020’s participates in an ePanel discussion and SciTalks presentations

    As part of the eAccess Meetings project, EAVI2020 participated in an ePanel discussion on Antibody Functions Beyond Neutralization with Prof Robin Shattock as a panellist (Imperial College) and Dr Gabriella Scarlatti (Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise) as moderator.

    The ePanel discussion is available online and can be found on the Enterprise web portal or on their YouTube Channel playlist.

    screenshots of TV frame of Gabriella Scarlatti and Robin Shattock

    Additionally, Gunilla Karlsson Hedestam and Paola Martinez Murillo (Karolinska Institutet) also participated in the SciTalks with presentations on “Individualized profiling of germline antibody V genes” and “F9, a new class of antibodies that neutralizes autologous tier 2 viruses in NHP immunized with liposome conjugated well-ordered trimers”.

    SciTalks can also be accessed on the Enterprise web portal or on their YouTube Channel playlist.

    screenshots of TV frames of Gunilla Karlsson Hedestam and Paola Martinez-Murillo

     

    More information

    eAccess Meetings: 2017 Keystone Symposia on HIV Vaccines.

    For more information about EAVI2020, please contact us.

  8. EAVI2020 at the Keystone Symposia on HIV vaccines, 26-31 March 2017

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    EAVI2020’s partner institutions presented the latest research on HIV vaccines at the Keystone Symposia on HIV vaccines.

    As part of the Keystone Symposia Global Health Series, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the HIV vaccines series took place on the 26-31 March 2017 in Colorado, USA.

    Despite great progress in preventing and treating HIV, new infections continue to plague communities around the world, and the need for an HIV vaccine is as urgent as ever. Several large cohorts of HIV-infected individuals have enabled tremendous advances over the past five years in understanding immune responses to natural HIV infection. These advances have included the isolation of broad and potent anti-HIV antibodies, defining their developmental pathways, the generation of native-like Env trimers for immunization, and high-resolution structures of the envelope glycoprotein in complex with bnAbs. By 2017, many of these discoveries will have enabled new concepts to transition into human clinical trials, including passive monoclonal antibody therapy and novel immunization approaches. These platforms, incorporating improved technology for monitoring immune responses, will drive major advances in the vaccine field. This HIV Vaccines meeting will present the latest results from human clinical studies, along with the cutting-edge basic science behind such trials to highlight approaches that may lead to an HIV vaccine, and also reveal the molecular underpinnings of B and T cell-mediated immunity.

    EAVI2020 at the Keystone Symposia

    EAVI2020 partners gave presentations on the latest research developments under EAVI2020 on topics like DNA Vaccination for Experimental Medicine Trials of HIV Vaccines (R. Shattock, Imperial), Inducing HIV-1 Neutralizing Antibodies with Native-Like Envelope Trimers (R. Sanders, AMC), Individualized Profiling of Germline V Genes and Application to Env Trimer Immunogenicity Studies in NHPs (G. Karlsson Hedestam, Karolinska Institutet) and ADCC and Beyond (S. Kent, University of Melbourne).

    EAVI2020’s PhD student Yoann Aldon also gave a poster presentation on HIV vaccines management.

    More information

    Full programme and for more information on the Keystone Symposia on HIV vaccines.

    For more information about EAVI2020, please contact us.

    Gunilla Karlsson Hedestam talking in front of a digital projection Rogier Sanders talking behind a lectern

    G. Karlsson Hedestam and R. Sanders.
  9. Marit van Gils wins the Beijerinck Premium award from the Royal Dutch Academy of Science.

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    The Beijerinck Premium is intended to encourage virology research and is awarded every two years.

    Marit van Gils is a post-doc researcher at Academisch Medisch Centrum and is part of the team working in EAVI2020. This award is given to young post-doc researchers in recognition of outstanding virus-related research at a Dutch scientific organisation.
    The ceremony will take place on the 3rd March 2017.

    More information
    For more information please go to the Beijerinck Premium’s website.

  10. Presentations from EAVI2020 partners at the 2016 Keystone Symposia on HIV Vaccines are available online!

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    The Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise in collaboration with Keystone Symposia organized an ePanel discussion and series of SciTalks presentations that brought together key experts in the HIV prevention vaccine field.

    The ePanel and SciTalks addressed a broad range of topics pertinent to state-of-the-art HIV vaccine research. As part of the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise eAccess Meetings initiative, videos of several presentations recorded onsite at the 2016 Keystone Symposia on HIV Vaccines are available.


    EAVI2020 – present at the 2016 Keystone Symposia on HIV Vaccines

    The Keystone Symposia highlighted cutting-edge scientific developments and challenges in the field in 90-minute sessions that included SciTalk presentations by EAVI2020 Partners:

    Professor Tomas Hanke, from the University of Oxford, presented “A novel conserved-region T-cell mosaic vaccine with very high global coverage of HIV-1 variants is recognized by protective responses in chronic untreated infection” and his presentation is available as a webcast.

    Dr Marit van Gils, from Academisch Medisch Centrum, received the New Investigator Award at HIVR4P and presented “A broadly neutralizing antibody from an elite neutralizer, targets a novel site at the gp120-gp41 interface”. Her presentation is available as a webcast.

    More information

    eAccess Meetings past presentations.
    For more information about EAVI2020, please contact us.