A Phase 1 Dose-Sparing, Randomized Clinical Trial of Seasonal Trivalent Inactivated Influenza Vaccine Combined With MAS-1, A Novel Water-In-Oil Adjuvant/Delivery System

Publication Type
Journal Article
Year of Publication
Gorse, Geoffrey J; Grimes, Stephen; Buck, Helen; Mulla, Hussain; White, Peter; Hill, Heather; May, Jeanine; Frey, Sharon E; Blackburn, Peter
Date Published
2022 02 23
Adjuvants, Immunologic; Adolescent; Adult; Antibodies, Viral; Hemagglutination Inhibition Tests; Humans; Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype; Influenza A Virus, H3N2 Subtype; Influenza Vaccines; Influenza, Human; Middle Aged; Seasons; Vaccines, Inactivated; VID/NOVA; Water; Young Adult

BACKGROUND: New influenza vaccines are needed to increase vaccine efficacy. Adjuvants may allow hemagglutinin (HA) dose-sparing with enhanced immunogenicity. MAS-1 is an investigational low viscosity, free-flowing, water-in-oil emulsion-based adjuvant/delivery system comprised of stable nanoglobular aqueous droplets.

METHODS: A phase 1, double-blind, safety and immunogenicity, HA dose escalation, randomized clinical trial was conducted. MAS-1 adjuvant with 1, 3, 5 or 9 µg per HA derived from licensed seasonal trivalent high dose inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV, Fluzone HD 60 µg per HA) in a 0.3 mL dose were compared to standard dose IIV (Fluzone SD, 15 µg per HA). Safety was measured by reactogenicity, adverse events, and clinical laboratory tests. Serum hemagglutination inhibition (HAI) antibody titers were measured for immunogenicity.

RESULTS: Seventy-two subjects, aged 18-47 years, received one dose of either 0.3 mL adjuvanted vaccine or SD IIV intramuscularly. Common injection site and systemic reactions post-vaccination were mild tenderness, induration, pain, headache, myalgia, malaise and fatigue. All reactions resolved within 14 days post-vaccination. Safety laboratory measures were not different between groups. Geometric mean antibody titers, geometric mean fold increases in antibody titer, seroconversion rates and seroprotection rates against vaccine strains were in general higher and of longer duration (day 85 and 169 visits) with MAS-1-adjuvanted IIV at all doses of HA compared with SD IIV. Adjuvanted vaccine induced higher antibody responses against a limited number of non-study vaccine influenza B and A/H3N2 viruses including ones from subsequent years.

CONCLUSION: MAS-1 adjuvant in a 0.3 mL dose volume provided HA dose-sparing effects without safety concerns and induced higher HAI antibody and seroconversion responses through at least 6 months, demonstrating potential to provide greater vaccine efficacy throughout an influenza season in younger adults. In summary, MAS-1 may provide enhanced, more durable and broader protective immunity compared with non-adjuvanted SD IIV. Clinical Trial Registry: ClinicalTrials.gov # NCT02500680.