Therapeutic vaccine of hepatitis B virus infection and disease


To construct and test a single-shot vaccine for treating chronic hepatitis B infection

Anticipated Impact: 

Improved treatment of hepatitis B and prevention of liver damage and cancer


Approximately 400 million people worldwide, including 1 million people in the US, are chronically infected with hepatitis B virus (HBV). Chronic hepatitis B infection is a major cause of liver damage and cancer. Existing drug therapies have limited effectiveness, and current vaccines are approved only for prevention and not treatment. Dr. Clark and colleagues have created a novel vaccine platform that can effectively stimulate the immune system to fight disease without off-target effects. LSDF funding will support generation and preclinical testing of an HBV therapeutic vaccine candidate. A new company, On Target Vaccines, is being formed to license the technology for further development and commercialization.

Collaborating organization: Shilshole Bioscience

Based on the success of the therapeutic vaccine, a supplement was awarded to test a prophylactic (protective) vaccine for HBV using the same platform and animal model.

Hepatitis Treatment

Grant Update

Principal Investigator:
Edward Clark
Grantee Organization:
University of Washington
Grant Title:
Therapeutic vaccine of hepatitis B virus infection and disease
Grant Cohort and Year:
2015 Proof of Concept (03)
Grant Period:
03/16/2015 - 03/15/2018 (Completed)
Grant Amount:
Over 400 million people worldwide are infected chronically with hepatitis B virus (HBV) including at least 120 million in China alone. Many of these people go on to develop hepatic cancer, making HBV the second leading cause of cancer in the world. With the help of the LSDF, we have developed a recombinant protein immuotherapeutic that will induce the immune response to kill HBV infected cells and reduce viral spread in chronic hepatitis B. After immunization with this HBV immunotherapeutic, macaques developed strong IgG antibody and cytotoxic T cell responses to HBV. Based on these proof of concept results we have created a UW spinout biotech company to bring forward an HBV therapeutic vaccine and a vaccine platform that could be useful for preventing the spread of HBV and other viruses like hepatitis C virus and Zika virus.

Impact in Washington

Location of LSDF Grantee
Locations of Collaborations/Areas of Impact

Legislative Districts:
11, 34, 36, 37, 43, 46

Health Impacts

Hepatitis Treatment