The Scientist

November 5, 2014 7:32 PM

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The Scientist

A small biotech company in Atlanta, GeoVax has been making slow but steady progress on an HIV vaccine since 2001. Its modified vaccinia virus Ankara (MVA) vector is based on an attenuated smallpox vaccine that was safely given to more than 100,000 people in the 1970s. Now, with clinical trials for its HIV vaccine well underway, GeoVax is responding to the Ebola epidemic by adapting its proprietary MVA vector to produce virus-like particles that carry the Ebola virus glycoprotein.

“Right now, when we’re doing the design of the vector, really it’s the talent that you have in-house that’s more important than head count of people. And it doesn’t necessarily take a whole lot of money either,” said Robert McNally, the president and CEO of GeoVax, which has seven full-time employee...

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