My research interests include development of vaccines against malaria and primarily vaccines that aim to block the sexual development of the malaria parasite in the mosquito vector and block transmission. The projects in the group ranges from vaccine design, generation and pre-clinical testing to GMP manufacture and Phase 1 human clinical trials.
The group currently focuses on the pre-clinical development and comparative assessment of novel transmission-blocking vaccines and early stage clinical testing of the promising candidates in collaboration with a number of industrial partners like Imaxio, ExpreS2ion and GSK. In the last few years we have worked on various platforms for generating recombinant protein and virus-like- particle vaccines for the induction of high titre functional antibody responses.
We are currently testing simian adenovirus (ChAd63) and poxvirus (MVA) viral vectored vaccines expressing the transmission-blocking vaccine candidate Pfs25 fused to a multimerisation domain (IMX313) in human clinical trials to assess the it’s safety, immunogenicity and ex vivo efficacy. We are also in the process of GMP manufacturing a nanoparticle vaccine and progressing it to Phase 1 clinical trials. The group also has strong links with collaborators in malaria endemic areas (Kenya and Burkina Faso) to test these candidates further.
Vaccination with Plasmodium vivax Duffy-binding protein inhibits parasite growth during controlled human malaria infection
Hou M. et al, (2023), Science Translational Medicine
Structure of the malaria vaccine candidate Pfs48/45 and its recognition by transmission blocking antibodies.
Ko K-T. et al, (2022), Nat Commun, 13
Impact of a blood-stage vaccine on Plasmodium vivax malaria
Hou MM. et al, (2022)
Modular capsid decoration boosts adenovirus vaccine-induced humoral and cellular immunity against SARS-CoV-2
Dicks MDJ. et al, (2022)