HJF Facilitates Transfer of Nipah Virus Treatment to India Amidst Outbreak

HJF has facilitated the transfer of the m102.4 human monoclonal antibody, an experimental therapy for Nipah virus infection, from Queensland, Australia to Kerala, India, where the virus has killed close to 20 people. The antibody, which is the only known treatment for the infection, is being given for compassionate use to those who are infected or are suspected to be infected with Nipah virus.

The government of Queensland, which previously administered the monoclonal antibody for compassionate use, sent multiple doses of the experimental therapy to India.

In 2010, the antibody was given to the Government of Queensland, Australia, for compassionate use, when it was feared that a mother and her 12-year-old daughter’s exposure to their Hendra-virus-infected horse could lead to life-threatening illness. Hendra virus is closely related to Nipah virus. Australian officials petitioned the Uniformed Services University (USU), which worked with HJF’s technology transfer team to deliver the antibody that was administered to the mother and daughter.

HJF worked with USU, the National Institutes of Health and Australian authorities to transfer the antibody to Brisbane’s Princess Alexandra Hospital. The team then helped negotiate an agreement for the transfer of the monoclonal antibody cell line to Queensland Health to produce and stockpile the therapy for future compassionate use.  The m102.4 was successfully tested in a Phase 1 clinical safety trial in Queensland.

Dr. Christopher Broder of the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at USU, in collaboration with Dr. Dimiter Dimitrov, formerly of the National Institutes of Health and now a professor at the University of Pittsburgh, previously developed the antibody that was tested in several animal models to show its efficacy in Nipah and Hendra virus infections.

“HJF is pleased to be able to facilitate the transfer of the experimental m102.4 human monoclonal antibody from Queensland for human compassionate use in India in patients infected with Nipah virus and potentially exposed to Nipah virus in this outbreak, as it is the only known treatment for this deadly disease,” said Mark G. Scher, Ph.D., HJF’s director of Technology Transfer and Commercialization.