Medicago has developed three proprietary technologies for the development of vaccines: virus-like particles (VLPs), the VLPExpress™ platform and plant-based Proficia™ technology.
Medicago’s virus-like particles (VLPs) represent an exciting new emerging vaccine technology for generating effective and long-lasting protection. VLPs mimic the native structure of viruses, allowing them to be recognized readily by the immune system, but lack core genetic material, so they are non-infectious and unable to replicate. In other words, they are safe and highly effective.
Structure designed to trigger the immune system
- VLPs consist of protein shells studded with short strands of the proteins specific to whatever disease the vaccine is intended to control.
- Unlike current influenza vaccines that are manufactured with an inactivated virus, VLP-based vaccines do not require an actual sample of the virus – just the genetic sequence of the virus or bacteria.
- In fact, Medicago never handles infectious materials in any of its facilities.
Potent and long-lasting effects
- VLPs trigger multiple aspects of the immune response to achieve potent immune stimulation and provide immunological memory. This translates into effective and durable protection.
- VLP-based vaccines have also been shown to provide protection against virus mutations in addition to the strain for which the vaccine was formulated, which can translate into a more cost-effective and efficient immunization program.
Left: Infectious influenza virus with surface antigens, lipid membrane, internal proteins and genetic material
Right: Medicago's VLP lacks the core genetic material of the virus, making it a non-infectious but highly efficient way to present antigens to the immune system.