The race for cures: a researcher is working on a form never before seen, vaccine

La course aux remèdes: un chercheur planche sur une forme jamais vue de vaccin

The efforts in the development of a vaccine against the COVID-19 continued unrestrained in Quebec and a researcher of the Université Laval board on a form ever view of a vaccine inhaler, aimed directly at the lungs.

Dr. Denis Leclerc, a researcher in microbiology and infectious diseases has chosen this way, because it is, according to him, most direct way to reach directly the organs affected by the COVID-19.

“It brings more robustness to the level of protection, because it treats the infected organ. The immunity is sought is really in the lungs, ” said the doctor.

A first

The technique, however, remains to be perfected, since there is no vaccine as such, had never been administered by way intrapulmonaire.

Only treatments of corticosteroids for asthma are closer to the idea of Dr. Leclerc, who is still considering how best to administer the vaccine, either by inhaler or nebulizer.

“I’m working with lung specialists, including Dr. Dominic Deschênes, who is an expert in the routes of administration. We are going to have to experiment to take the most efficient path to ensure that it reaches to the depths of the lung and triggers the immune response more effectively “, explains the researcher.

Rejuvenate the immune system

The latter believes that its work has a good chance of success due to its platform vaccine that triggers a response from the innate immune system.

The expert believes that it is the weakness of the immune system in the elderly that makes them more vulnerable to the COVID-19.

“Children have the innate immunity in the carpet because their adaptive system is not yet developed. While the body of the elderly relies on the adaptive, acquired over the years. Like the COVID-19 is a new virus, the system does not recognize it and has no defenses, ” says the specialist.

“In managing to “wake up” the system innate in the elderly, it is as if you rajeunissait plan immune, ” Dr. Leclerc, convinced that the key to the riddle lies there.

“I believe that it is this which explains why older people are so affected, and that is why I have as much confidence in our formula. ”

3 other solutions in the testing phase


The Quebec-based company is still in the phase of clinical testing for a vaccine. Its first results on the mice are encouraging and open the possibility of the first tests in humans during the summer.


The results of pre-clinical testing for a vaccine are expected by the management of the company based also in Québec. The human trials are planned for July on two clinical sites in Nova Scotia and Quebec.


The researchers of the company of Laval, have also launched their phase of pre-clinical testing for a vaccine in the last few weeks. Here, too, tests on humans are referred to by the end of 2020.

This thinks of that the doc Béliveau

Vaccine quebec : The vaccination by inhalation is a new approach that could offer an interesting alternative to traditional vaccines. However, there is still a lot of work to be done to demonstrate the therapeutic potential of this new platform.

A medication could see the light of day through his work

The platform of immunization of the Dr Denis Leclerc, a nanoparticle that he developed over the past few years, could act as a drug to slow the progression of the virus in the meantime the development of the vaccine in full. A work ” on two fronts “, which encourages greatly the researcher.

Dr. Leclerc, Centre de recherche du CHU de Québec-Laval University, believes that in the meantime the vaccine, its nanoparticle could “calm the fire” in NURSING homes of the province.

“It was found that the nanoparticle alone, without join virus, stimulates the immune system. It’s like a decoy, a fake virus, that triggers a response “, explains the microbiologist-infectiologist.

Buy the time

In the laboratory, the protection created by the nanoparticle lasted about a week, but the team of Dr. Leclerc has been able to inject it a few times with success.

“We could thus go in a hotbed of infection, for example, a ltc facility, and treat people who are not yet infected. If we can re-inject the nanoparticle to a few times, it gives a few weeks to control the situation to the inside to avoid spreading the virus to all residents, ” observes the researcher.

Such a maneuver would allow the system to buy time for the development of a real vaccine protecting against the COVID-19 specifically. “It is a work on two fronts “, image Dr. Leclerc, who has already done many tests with his platform of immunization.

“We have already been in clinical phase with that in the past, it is already approved by Health Canada, so it could go fast “, want to the expert.

The latter also says it is touched by the public response to a request for sociofinancement that it has launched a few weeks ago.

Asking initially for $ 50,000 for the purchase of equipment, Dr. Leclerc has finally collected the double. Seen this craze, a new goal has been set at $ 150,000.

This thinks of that the doc Béliveau

Nanoparticles : The reduction of the effectiveness of the immune system during ageing contributes greatly to the vulnerability of the elderly to the COVID-19. The innate immune response triggered by nanoparticles could, therefore, compensate for this deficit and improve the defenses antiviral people at high risk of being infected by the virus. The evidence, however, remains to be established.

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