Free Webinar | Vaccine Development for COVID-19

Recorded May 21, 2020 | 2:30-3:30 EDT

Chairperson: Rob Burgess, PhD, Chief Business Officer, Sino Biological

2:30 A Global Health Vaccine for COVID-19

Peter Hotez, MD, PhD, FASTMH, FAAP, Dean, National School of Tropical Medicine; Professor, Departments of Pediatrics, Molecular Virology & Microbiology; Co-Head, Section of Pediatric Tropical Medicine; Health Policy Scholar, Baylor College of Medicine

COVID-19 has become a major global health threat, approaching 2 million cases globally, and now extending into developing nations of Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Low-cost affordable vaccines to prevent COVID-19 are under development at the Texas Children's Center for Vaccine Development of the National School of Tropical at Baylor College of Medicine. Our technology is a recombinant protein vaccine similar to the one used to prevent hepatitis B. One vaccine is advancing into clinical testing, while a second will follow in 2021.

2:50 Strategies and Challenges for COVID-19 Antibody Development

Jiahui Yang, PhD, Director, R&D, Sino Biological

The COVID-19 pandemic is caused by a newly discovered coronavirus, SARS-Cov-2. To characterize and detect this new virus, antibodies to support scientific research, diagnosis and vaccine development are in urgent need. Sino Biological, Inc. develops specific S and N antibodies to SARS-Cov-2 by several antibody generation platforms, including hybridoma, B cell antibody cloning and antibody phage display library. Meanwhile, we also obtained antibodies to recognize all 7 strains of coronaviruses that infected humans. Several candidates are selected for further analysis in research, potential diagnosis applications, and to facilitate vaccine development.

3:10 Development of a Single Dose Vaccine Against COVID-19 Using GV-MVA-VLP Vector Platform

Farshad Guirakhoo, PhD, CSO, GeoVax

In only a few months, the emerging COVID-19 has caused a global pandemic, killed hundreds of thousands, and crippled the global economy. A safe and effective vaccine to control this new pathogen is desperately needed. We have leveraged our unique, safe, live viral GV-MVA-VLP™ platform to develop multiple vaccine candidates against COVID-19. These will be down selected to one in appropriate challenge models for safety and efficacy before entering into humans.

Speaker Biographies

Rob Burgess, PhD
Chief Business Officer, Sino Biological

Dr. Rob Burgess is currently Chief Business Officer at Sino Biological, Inc. and has over 25 years of scientific and business development experience. His previous positions include Vice President, Global Business Development at RayBiotech; Vice President, Business Development for the U.K.-based firm Stem Cell Sciences; Vice President, Research and Development at the nanotechnology company Zyvex Corporation; Director of Scientific Sourcing and New Technologies for the bio-reagent and services company Serologicals Corporation; and Senior Director, Functional Genomics and Corporate Business Development for the Serologicals subsidiary Chemicon International. In addition, he has published in major scientific journals including Nature and Science on a variety of research in genetic engineering, developmental biology, and the molecular control of cellular identity. He has received numerous awards including appointment to the Governor’s Blue-Ribbon Steering Committee for the Southern California Life Sciences Summit and Visiting Scholar at Georgia Tech University. He has also authored two college textbooks: "Understanding Nanomedicine: An Introductory Textbook" available from Pan Stanford Publishing and “Stem Cells: A Short Course” available from Wiley-Blackwell. Dr. Burgess holds a BA in biochemistry from the University of Texas at Austin and a PhD in molecular biology from the University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. 

Peter Hotez, MD, PhD
FASTMH, FAAP, Dean, National School of Tropical Medicine; Professor, Departments of Pediatrics, Molecular Virology & Microbiology; Co-Head, Section of Pediatric Tropical Medicine; Health Policy Scholar, Baylor College of Medicine

Peter J. Hotez, MD, PhD is Dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine and Professor of Pediatrics and Molecular Virology & Microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine where he is also the Director of the Texas Children’s Center for Vaccine Development (CVD) and Texas Children’s Hospital Endowed Chair of Tropical Pediatrics. He is also University Professor at Baylor University, Fellow in Disease and Poverty at the James A Baker III Institute for Public Policy, Senior Fellow at the Scowcroft Institute of International Affairs at Texas A&M University, Faculty Fellow with the Hagler Institute for Advanced Studies at Texas A&M University, and Health Policy Scholar in the Baylor Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy. Dr. Hotez is an internationally recognized physician-scientist in neglected tropical diseases and vaccine development. As head of the Texas Children’s CVD, he leads a team and product development partnership for developing new vaccines for hookworm infection, schistosomiasis, leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, and SARS/MERS/SARS-2 coronavirus, diseases affecting hundreds of millions of children and adults worldwide, while championing access to vaccines globally and in the United States.

Jiahui Yang, PhD
Director, R&D, Sino Biological

Dr. Jiahui Yang received her PhD from Tufts University. She joined Sino Biological Inc. since 2010 and currently is the Director of R&D department. She has 10-year recombinant protein and antibody development and optimization experience. She and her team have successfully produced >3000 recombinant proteins and >5000 antibodies.

Farshad Guirakhoo, PhD
CSO, GeoVax

Dr. Farshad Guirakhoo is currently CSO at GeoVax, overseeing all R&D projects for developing vaccines against infectious diseases and cancer using a novel GV-MVA-VLPTM vector platform. His previous assignments included CTO at Vaxess, CSO at Hookipa, and Executive Director at Sanofi Pasteur. He was named one of the 50 Most Influential People in Vaccines in Vaccine Nation’s 2014 list. Dr. Guirakhoo is the author of over 100 peer-reviewed publications, including book chapters. He is the inventor of numerous patents including ChimeriVax® platform that resulted in multiple commercial vaccines including Dengvaxia® (the world’s only dengue vaccine), Imojev® (a single dose vaccine against Japanese encephalitis virus) and Prevnile® (a horse vaccine against West Nile virus). Dr. Guirakhoo received his PhD in Virology from the University of Vienna, Austria, holds a MSc in Genetics, and a BSc in Biology. He has been awarded the National Research Council Post-Doctorate Award and studied at the National Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Division of Vector-Borne Infectious Diseases (DVBID), in Fort Collins, CO.