MGN1333 - DNA vaccine against hepatitis B

About hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is a severe liver disease caused by the hepatitis B virus. An estimated 240 million people suffer from hepatitis B; around 6 million people die from the acute or chronic consequences of the infection every year. Treating chronic hepatitis B is difficult, which is why preventative vaccination is the most important measure.

Although there are efficacious vaccinations, there is a great need for innovative, enhanced vaccines which provide immunization with just a single dose (presently, three vaccinations are usually required) and which can also be used as treatment.

MIDGE® DNA vectors form the basis

This is where MOLOGEN AG applies its research findings. With its own MIDGE® vectors, it has created an excellent platform for developing well-tolerated DNA vaccines. Unlike other DNA vectors (plasmids, viruses), the MIDGE® vector contains only the information it requires to have an effect and is also typically around 50-80% smaller than previous plasmid-based DNA vectors.

Previous experience has shown that MIDGE® vectors are non-toxic even at doses much higher than the clinically indicated level and do not cause inflammation.  MIDGE® vectors also cause no immune reactions.  The fact that the vector is also not integrated into the patient's genetic material represents a further important safety aspect. The MIDGE® vectors from MOLOGEN overcome the disadvantages of other gene transfer and expression systems, in particular with regard to efficacy and safety. 

The goal - a highly efficacious and well-tolerated DNA vaccine 

In preclinical trials, we have already shown a strong immune response after just one injection, which suggests that MGN1333 has a very good prophylactic efficacy.

As part of preclinical development, MOLOGEN has teamed up with a partner company from the Netherlands. MGN1333 was developed with the support of a Federal Ministry for Education and Research development program which ended in 2013.

Due to limited financial resources and the focus on lefitolimod, it is not possible to substantially progress these projects. Consequently, MOLOGEN intends to sell off the MIDGE®technology together with all the associated compounds; a spin-off is conceivable as an alternative.