Concomitantly, as of Jan 1, 2021, Viravaxx has recruited Dr. Helmut Brunar as its new CEO. Dr. Brunar brings vast expertise in vaccines, cell-therapies and diagnostic products to the company. Before joining Viravaxx, he managed supply chain activities at Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine program. Prior to this, he was CEO & Chairman with Axentis Pharma AG where he built a team to develop respiratory drug candidate AX-TOBRA. Dr. Brunar will take over from Dr. Rainer Henning, who has made invaluable contributions for establishing the company at the forefront of innovative immunodiagnostics and vaccine development.
The management team is completed with Dr. Frank Stolz, who has been with Viravaxx since its inception. Dr. Stolz is an experienced head of pre-clinical and clinical product development with a successful history of working in biotechnology and in basic research. At Viravaxx, he is responsible for product innovation, process and analytical development. He leads Viravaxx’s preclinical vaccine development and diagnostic platforms.
Viravaxx focuses its activities on hard-to-treat viral infections, such as respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and rhinovirus (RV), which have resisted vaccination approaches for a long time. To this end, Viravaxx collaborates with Prof. Dr. Rudolf Valenta’s research group at the Medical University of Vienna. The Valenta labs exploit technology to convert non-immunogenic epitopes of surface proteins essential for the virus life cycle to potent immunogens. In addition, the Valenta labs develop multiplexed tools for high resolution serum immune diagnostics.
The cooperation with the Valenta labs puts Viravaxx in a perfect position to strengthen its partnering position with big pharma and biotech. With its marketed – research use only – high-resolution multiplex proteomic chip for whole-genome antigen mapping, its SARS-CoV-2 Interaction Assay and its clinical-stage hepatitis B candidate VVX001 for therapeutic and prophylactic vaccination, Viravaxx is well prepared to participate at the upcoming 39th J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference. This conference, held virtually for the first time in 2021, is the largest healthcare conference kicking-off the new year.
Viravaxx AG is an emerging biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of innovative antiviral vaccines and immunodiagnostics. For the development of vaccines, Viravaxx converts immuno-dominant protein epitopes into potent antigens eliciting a strong IgG antibody response. This technology allows to design vaccines across different serotypes by addressing invariant regions of any antigen required for receptor binding and virus entry. Viravaxx’s lead product is the clinical-stage hepatitis B candidate VVX001 for therapeutic and prophylactic vaccination – currently in clinical phase II. http://www.viravaxx.eu/
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