In early September 2022 CanSino Biologics Inc. announced that the National Medical Products Administration of China (NMPA) had “granted the Company approval” for a Recombinant COVID-19 Vaccine for inhalation. The vaccine, Convidecia Air, is to be used as a booster dose.  

Convidecia Air 

Convidecia Air uses the “same adenovirus vector technological platform” as a previous intramuscular iteration, Convidecia. However, it provides a less invasive option. A nebuliser changes liquid into an aerosol for inhalation through the mouth. This needle-free technology “can effectively induce comprehensive immune protection in response to SARS-CoV-2 after just one breath”. According to studies in The Lancet, the vaccine offers strong “triple protection” to limit the spread of the virus.  

In July 2022 a pre-print study demonstrated that patients who received one inhaled booster dose after two previous doses of another vaccine developed “more antibodies than people who received three Sinovac shots”. 4 weeks after the booster dose 92.5% of people had developed neutralising antibodies for the Omicron variant.  

The bigger picture 

Fortune reported that it is “unclear” how this new jab will be distributed, or “how useful” it will prove in China’s fight against the virus. It suggested that the “market appears largely saturated already”. Indeed, another protein-based jab from Livzon Pharma was also approved by the Chinese government for booster use. However, in the US several scientists have demanded the government “accelerate efforts to develop and nasal spray vaccines” in the hope that they will address the Omicron infections more directly.  

In response to the positive announcement, CanSino’s stock price increased by 8% in Hong Kong. This comes after an 87% drop since the end of 2020. CanSino reported that it has “achieved steady production of various innovative vaccines and established a global supply chain”. Its goal is to “continue to make quality vaccine products more accessible by the global population”.

To learn more about vaccine innovation at the World Vaccine Congress in Europe this October, get your tickets here.