An “oral vaccine” can raise the antibody titer by eating instead of inoculating. 

Proteins are decomposed into amino acids when ingested orally. But it was found that the antibody titer of some proteins expressed in silkworm can be increased even when ingested orally.

KAICO’s oral vaccines are also minimally invasive, less costly to administer, and can be supplied to low-income populations.

“Oral vaccines” can be transported and stored at room temperature, for example, to the hinterland of Africa. In addition, since oral vaccine can be taken by him/herself, syringe is not required and the labor of medical personnel can be reduced.

For livestock, etc., the oral vaccine can be effective in preventing infectious diseases simply by mixing it with a  compound feed. It leads to a reduction in labor costs.  In the fishery field, it can be administered to subjects such as fry and tuna that were previously difficult to vaccinate.

Technology Tractions

KAICO’s core technology is the expression of recombinant proteins using silkworms. By pulverizing whole silkworm pupae expressing the desired protein, KAICO has succeeded in developing raw materials for oral vaccines.

The results of an attack test of the oral vaccine on pigs in 2022 showed that it was as effective as the injectable vaccine. By suppressing the virus, a weight gain effect was also confirmed.

Results of oral vaccine attack test for pigs(March 2022)

All of the oral vaccine-free group were infected with the virus, whereas the oral vaccine-administered group significantly suppressed viremia (patent applied).As a result of suppressing the virus, a weight gain effect was also seen.

Steps in the oral vaccine business

While aiming for practical use as a vaccine for medical use, we are building a business model for mixing oral vaccine raw materials with feed to distribute it for animals. We plan to launch it as a “feed additive”.

For animals, we are proceeding with the development of an oral vaccine for pigs (PCV2) in advance. 

As Step 1, we have a plan to sell it as a “feed additive” that mixes oral vaccine raw materials with feed, aiming for early monetization. 

Then Step 2 to obtain approval for oral vaccines in Japan and overseas.