A new needle-free vaccine for the flu is being trialled on the Sunshine Coast and in Brisbane.
UniSC Clinical Trials has partnered with Australian biotechnology company Vaxxas, developers of the high-density microarray patch (HD-MAP), to assess the needle-free technology for vaccinating against influenza.
It comes after a similar study in 2021 for a patch to deliver a vaccine for measles and rubella, and a trial currently underway for COVID-19.
Chief technology officer at Vaxxas Dr Angus Forster says the study will investigate the safety and tolerability of an influenza vaccine delivered using the company’s HD-MAP technology.
He says it will also assess whether it provides an immune response comparable to a traditional dose of a flu vaccine, delivered by needle and syringe directly into the muscle.
The trial will be led by Dr Nischal Sahai at the UniSC Clinical Trials clinic in South Bank, Brisbane.
“It’s very exciting to be working with innovative Australian vaccination technology that could potentially change the way vaccines are administered around the world,” Dr Sahai says.
“HD-MAP technology could mean that vaccines no longer need to be refrigerated, making it easier to transport them safely to people in remote locations.
“We received a good response from the community for our trial last year with the HD-MAP technology. We hope they will be as excited as we are to participate in this next clinical study,” he says.
The study requires healthy volunteers aged 18-50 years old who are in good general health and have a body mass index within the range of 18-32.
Participants will be required to visit the UniSC Clinical Trials clinics at South Bank in Brisbane or Sippy Downs on the Sunshine Coast approximately six times over a two-and-a-half-month period.