As China continues to extract itself from its former COVID-19 policies CanSino Biologics announced in January 2023 that it had seen “encouraging clinical progress” of an mRNA vaccine CS-2034. This comes just under a year after the clinical trial approval in China. China’s approach until this point has been a reliance on domestically produced vaccines, which has drawn criticism from health experts. However, the recent progress from CanSinoBIO might enable China to effectively and safely vaccinate more people as it opens.  

CS-2034 in study 

The vaccine candidate was tested in a Phase IIb clinical  study for safety and immunogenicity. The results reportedly show that “booster vaccination with CS-2032 can provide broader protection against COVID-19 infections by inducing high-titre neutralising antibodies” against several variants of concern, when compared with “homologous inactivated booster vaccination”.  

The study was randomised, blinded, and parallel-controlled. It enrolled a total of 433 adult participants assigned to 2 groups. As well as a strong response against multiple SARS-CoV-2 variants, the press statement from CanSinoBIO details a “favourable safety profile for elderly people”. This could be particularly useful for the elderly population who are reluctant to get vaccinated for a variety of reasons.  

“Notably, the safety profile of elderly participants is better than that of participants aged 18-59.”  

China’s vaccine troubles

We explored some of the issues involved in the Chinese vaccination strategy in a previous post, but this foray into mRNA presents “significant advantages” to vaccine development. CanSinoBIO identifies “fast, scalable, and uniform production” that can be applied to areas “not limited to COVID-19 vaccine development”.  

We look forward to hearing more on vaccine development from CanSino Biologics at the World Vaccine Congress in April 2023. Join us by getting your tickets now.