At the forefront of the rising fields of Chemical and Synthetic Biology, CarbUniVax is a multidisciplinary project sitting at the frontier between Glycosciences and Vaccinology. A multidisciplinary strategy is proposed that challenges ambitious goals within a pharmaceutical context. In rupture with existing concepts, the project aims for innovative synergistic synthetic routes to deliver totally novel multivalent vaccines.
By promoting and valorizing the possible synergy between chemical synthesis and enzymatic synthesis using computer-aided engineered biocatalysts able to act on complex synthetic substrates, CarbUniVax will pave the way to finely tuned synthetic carbohydrate-based vaccines to overcome limitations associated to biological materials and current conjugate vaccines.
This concept will be exemplified for Shigella flexneri, a family of Gram negative bacteria responsible for bacillary dysentery, one of the four most prevalent enteric diseases in children under 5 living in developing countries. While the concept is tackled for bacillary dysentery, its versatility ensures broader applications in biomedical and sustainable chemistry fields.
The achievement of CarbUniVax relies on the synergistic interactions between the four partners composing the consortium, located at two different sites (Institut Pasteur Paris, INSA Toulouse), who will share their expertise and skills in enzyme design and engineering, glycochemistry and vaccinology, physico-chemistry of biomolecular interactions and immune response to carbohydrate antigens.