MigVax Corp., a newly formed Israeli Covid-19 vaccine developer, raised $12 million in fresh funding amidst the global race to find an effective vaccine against the coronavirus, according to reports.
An affiliate of The Migal Galilee Research Institute in Kiryat Shmona, MigVax is developing a new oral subunit human vaccine against Covid-19 by using the methods from its parent firm.
The Migal Galilee Research Institute is pioneering the effort to develop Israel’s human vaccine against the virus. It has previously developed a vaccine against infectious bronchitis virus, a coronavirus strain that causes bronchial disease affecting poultry.
Migal Galilee Research Institute CEO David Zigdon said the institute is now working to adjust its genetic vaccine system to Covid-19. He added that MigVax will use a fermentation process to have the material ready for clinical trials within a few months.
“The experiments we have carried out so far show that because the vaccine does not include the virus itself, it will be safe to use in immune-suppressed recipients, and has fewer chances of side effects,” Zigdon said.
The vaccine uses a protein vector that can form and secrete a chimeric soluble protein that carries the viral antigen into tissue and causes the production of antibodies against the virus by the immune system.
After MigVax made global headlines yesterday, the company joined OurCrowd execs, Israel’s Ministry of Economy & 2 more companies on #coronavirus frontlines for a discussion about Israel’s response to #COVID19.
Watch & discover how you too can get involved https://t.co/wMTwbHwMh2
— OurCrowd (@OurCrowd) April 23, 2020
MigVax said the $12-million funding round was anchored by OurCrowd, a Jerusalem-based investment platform that invests in startups and venture funds.
“We are humbled by the opportunity to invest in this company, which means so much to so many people. The race for a Covid-19 vaccine is about saving countless lives, and we are grateful to be able to support this important effort,” OurCrowd CEO Jon Medved.
Several countries around the globe are racing against time to find an effective vaccine against the Covid-19, which, according to the World Health Organization on Friday, has already infected 2.5 million people, with 175,825 cases ending in death.
In the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte has dangled a $1-million reward for individuals or companies that can produce a coronavirus vaccine.
The WHO announced earlier that it will partner with telecommunications companies, first in Asia, to further boost its information dissemination efforts to reach those who do not have access to the Internet.