US funds another $2.4M for Ebola vaccine work at BioCryst
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Research Triangle Park, N.C. — The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has provided another $2.4 million in funding to Triangle-based BioCryst Pharmaceuticals for further development of a potential vaccine to treat Ebola. It's part of a global ramping up to fight the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.
The BioCryst vaccine is known as BCX4430.
On Thursday, the U.S. government announced an acceleration of development for GlaxoSmithKline's potential Ebola vaccine.
BioCryst (Nasdaq: BCRX) announced the latest funding Friday morning. Two weeks ago, another $4.1 million was awarded.
The funding is part of a contract worth up to $24.4 million signed between NIAID and BioCryst in September 2013.
The new money will be used for a study of does ranging efficacy in non-human primates.
"The study is expected to be initiated within week," the company said.
No current treatment for Ebola exists.
The latest deal pushes the total committed thus far to some $16 million.
"The ongoing Ebola epidemic in West Africa emphasizes the urgent need for safe and effective antiviral agents for hemorrhagic fever virus diseases. With these additional funds, BioCryst can move forward with important non-human primate efficacy studies, an IND filing, and Phase 1 human trials of intramuscular BCX4430," said Dr. William Sheridan, Chief Medical Officer at BioCryst, in a statement about the funding two weeks ago.
"We look forward to the body of evidence supporting BCX4430 evolving into a highly compelling package, enabling us to attract U.S. Government advanced development funding," he added. "This is critical so that a new drug application can be filed as quickly as feasible for this unique, broad spectrum antiviral."
NIAID is part of the National Institutes of Health.
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