WO2021213945A1 - Coronavirus vaccine - Google Patents

Coronavirus vaccine Download PDF

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Publication number
WO2021213945A1
WO2021213945A1 PCT/EP2021/060004 EP2021060004W WO2021213945A1 WO 2021213945 A1 WO2021213945 A1 WO 2021213945A1 EP 2021060004 W EP2021060004 W EP 2021060004W WO 2021213945 A1 WO2021213945 A1 WO 2021213945A1
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WO
WIPO (PCT)
Prior art keywords
sars
cov
container
tray
dose
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/EP2021/060004
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Marjoh NAUTA
Dirk Jozef Peeters
Tom Frank Steven VAN DOORSLAER
Advait Vijay Badkar
Ramin Darvari
Nicholas William Warne
James JEAN
Danny Pierre G. HENDRIKSE
Ugur Sahin
Alptekin GÜLER
Andreas Kuhn
Alexander Muik
Annette VOGEL
Kerstin Walzer
Sonja Witzel
Stephanie HEIN
Özlem TÜRECI
Original Assignee
Pfizer Inc.
BioNTech SE
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Application filed by Pfizer Inc., BioNTech SE filed Critical Pfizer Inc.
Priority to US17/920,569 priority Critical patent/US20240002127A1/en
Priority to JP2022563993A priority patent/JP2023526178A/en
Priority to IL297414A priority patent/IL297414A/en
Priority to MX2022013264A priority patent/MX2022013264A/en
Priority to CA3176481A priority patent/CA3176481A1/en
Priority to AU2021260750A priority patent/AU2021260750A1/en
Priority to KR1020227040677A priority patent/KR20230015351A/en
Priority to BR112022019793A priority patent/BR112022019793A2/en
Priority to CN202180030057.4A priority patent/CN115843330A/en
Priority to EP21718593.3A priority patent/EP4139616A1/en
Publication of WO2021213945A1 publication Critical patent/WO2021213945A1/en

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    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F25D3/00Devices using other cold materials; Devices using cold-storage bodies
    • F25D3/12Devices using other cold materials; Devices using cold-storage bodies using solidified gases, e.g. carbon-dioxide snow
    • F25D3/125Movable containers
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61KPREPARATIONS FOR MEDICAL, DENTAL OR TOILETRY PURPOSES
    • A61K39/00Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies
    • A61K39/12Viral antigens
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61KPREPARATIONS FOR MEDICAL, DENTAL OR TOILETRY PURPOSES
    • A61K39/00Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies
    • A61K39/12Viral antigens
    • A61K39/215Coronaviridae, e.g. avian infectious bronchitis virus
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61PSPECIFIC THERAPEUTIC ACTIVITY OF CHEMICAL COMPOUNDS OR MEDICINAL PREPARATIONS
    • A61P31/00Antiinfectives, i.e. antibiotics, antiseptics, chemotherapeutics
    • A61P31/12Antivirals
    • A61P31/14Antivirals for RNA viruses
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D77/00Packages formed by enclosing articles or materials in preformed containers, e.g. boxes, cartons, sacks or bags
    • B65D77/04Articles or materials enclosed in two or more containers disposed one within another
    • B65D77/0413Articles or materials enclosed in two or more containers disposed one within another the inner and outer containers being rigid or semi-rigid and the outer container being of polygonal cross-section formed by folding or erecting one or more blanks, e.g. carton
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D81/00Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents
    • B65D81/02Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents specially adapted to protect contents from mechanical damage
    • B65D81/05Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents specially adapted to protect contents from mechanical damage maintaining contents at spaced relation from package walls, or from other contents
    • B65D81/127Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents specially adapted to protect contents from mechanical damage maintaining contents at spaced relation from package walls, or from other contents using rigid or semi-rigid sheets of shock-absorbing material
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B65CONVEYING; PACKING; STORING; HANDLING THIN OR FILAMENTARY MATERIAL
    • B65DCONTAINERS FOR STORAGE OR TRANSPORT OF ARTICLES OR MATERIALS, e.g. BAGS, BARRELS, BOTTLES, BOXES, CANS, CARTONS, CRATES, DRUMS, JARS, TANKS, HOPPERS, FORWARDING CONTAINERS; ACCESSORIES, CLOSURES, OR FITTINGS THEREFOR; PACKAGING ELEMENTS; PACKAGES
    • B65D81/00Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents
    • B65D81/38Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents with thermal insulation
    • B65D81/3813Containers, packaging elements, or packages, for contents presenting particular transport or storage problems, or adapted to be used for non-packaging purposes after removal of contents with thermal insulation rigid container being in the form of a box, tray or like container
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F25D29/00Arrangement or mounting of control or safety devices
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING OR COUNTING
    • G06QINFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY [ICT] SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE, COMMERCIAL, FINANCIAL, MANAGERIAL OR SUPERVISORY PURPOSES; SYSTEMS OR METHODS SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE, COMMERCIAL, FINANCIAL, MANAGERIAL OR SUPERVISORY PURPOSES, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • G06Q10/00Administration; Management
    • G06Q10/08Logistics, e.g. warehousing, loading or distribution; Inventory or stock management
    • G06Q10/083Shipping
    • G06Q10/0832Special goods or special handling procedures, e.g. handling of hazardous or fragile goods
    • GPHYSICS
    • G06COMPUTING; CALCULATING OR COUNTING
    • G06QINFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY [ICT] SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE, COMMERCIAL, FINANCIAL, MANAGERIAL OR SUPERVISORY PURPOSES; SYSTEMS OR METHODS SPECIALLY ADAPTED FOR ADMINISTRATIVE, COMMERCIAL, FINANCIAL, MANAGERIAL OR SUPERVISORY PURPOSES, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • G06Q10/00Administration; Management
    • G06Q10/08Logistics, e.g. warehousing, loading or distribution; Inventory or stock management
    • G06Q10/083Shipping
    • G06Q10/0833Tracking
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61KPREPARATIONS FOR MEDICAL, DENTAL OR TOILETRY PURPOSES
    • A61K39/00Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies
    • A61K2039/51Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies comprising whole cells, viruses or DNA/RNA
    • A61K2039/53DNA (RNA) vaccination
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61KPREPARATIONS FOR MEDICAL, DENTAL OR TOILETRY PURPOSES
    • A61K39/00Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies
    • A61K2039/545Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies characterised by the dose, timing or administration schedule
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61KPREPARATIONS FOR MEDICAL, DENTAL OR TOILETRY PURPOSES
    • A61K39/00Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies
    • A61K2039/555Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies characterised by a specific combination antigen/adjuvant
    • A61K2039/55511Organic adjuvants
    • A61K2039/55555Liposomes; Vesicles, e.g. nanoparticles; Spheres, e.g. nanospheres; Polymers
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61KPREPARATIONS FOR MEDICAL, DENTAL OR TOILETRY PURPOSES
    • A61K39/00Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies
    • A61K2039/57Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies characterised by the type of response, e.g. Th1, Th2
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61KPREPARATIONS FOR MEDICAL, DENTAL OR TOILETRY PURPOSES
    • A61K39/00Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies
    • A61K2039/57Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies characterised by the type of response, e.g. Th1, Th2
    • A61K2039/572Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies characterised by the type of response, e.g. Th1, Th2 cytotoxic response
    • AHUMAN NECESSITIES
    • A61MEDICAL OR VETERINARY SCIENCE; HYGIENE
    • A61KPREPARATIONS FOR MEDICAL, DENTAL OR TOILETRY PURPOSES
    • A61K39/00Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies
    • A61K2039/57Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies characterised by the type of response, e.g. Th1, Th2
    • A61K2039/575Medicinal preparations containing antigens or antibodies characterised by the type of response, e.g. Th1, Th2 humoral response
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C12BIOCHEMISTRY; BEER; SPIRITS; WINE; VINEGAR; MICROBIOLOGY; ENZYMOLOGY; MUTATION OR GENETIC ENGINEERING
    • C12NMICROORGANISMS OR ENZYMES; COMPOSITIONS THEREOF; PROPAGATING, PRESERVING, OR MAINTAINING MICROORGANISMS; MUTATION OR GENETIC ENGINEERING; CULTURE MEDIA
    • C12N2760/00MICROORGANISMS OR ENZYMES; COMPOSITIONS THEREOF; PROPAGATING, PRESERVING, OR MAINTAINING MICROORGANISMS; MUTATION OR GENETIC ENGINEERING; CULTURE MEDIA ssRNA viruses negative-sense
    • C12N2760/00011Details
    • C12N2760/20011Rhabdoviridae
    • C12N2760/20211Vesiculovirus, e.g. vesicular stomatitis Indiana virus
    • C12N2760/20223Virus like particles [VLP]
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C12BIOCHEMISTRY; BEER; SPIRITS; WINE; VINEGAR; MICROBIOLOGY; ENZYMOLOGY; MUTATION OR GENETIC ENGINEERING
    • C12NMICROORGANISMS OR ENZYMES; COMPOSITIONS THEREOF; PROPAGATING, PRESERVING, OR MAINTAINING MICROORGANISMS; MUTATION OR GENETIC ENGINEERING; CULTURE MEDIA
    • C12N2770/00MICROORGANISMS OR ENZYMES; COMPOSITIONS THEREOF; PROPAGATING, PRESERVING, OR MAINTAINING MICROORGANISMS; MUTATION OR GENETIC ENGINEERING; CULTURE MEDIA ssRNA viruses positive-sense
    • C12N2770/00011Details
    • C12N2770/20011Coronaviridae
    • C12N2770/20034Use of virus or viral component as vaccine, e.g. live-attenuated or inactivated virus, VLP, viral protein
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F25D2303/00Details of devices using other cold materials; Details of devices using cold-storage bodies
    • F25D2303/08Devices using cold storage material, i.e. ice or other freezable liquid
    • F25D2303/082Devices using cold storage material, i.e. ice or other freezable liquid disposed in a cold storage element not forming part of a container for products to be cooled, e.g. ice pack or gel accumulator
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F25D2331/00Details or arrangements of other cooling or freezing apparatus not provided for in other groups of this subclass
    • F25D2331/80Type of cooled receptacles
    • F25D2331/812Trays
    • FMECHANICAL ENGINEERING; LIGHTING; HEATING; WEAPONS; BLASTING
    • F25REFRIGERATION OR COOLING; COMBINED HEATING AND REFRIGERATION SYSTEMS; HEAT PUMP SYSTEMS; MANUFACTURE OR STORAGE OF ICE; LIQUEFACTION SOLIDIFICATION OF GASES
    • F25DREFRIGERATORS; COLD ROOMS; ICE-BOXES; COOLING OR FREEZING APPARATUS NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR
    • F25D2700/00Means for sensing or measuring; Sensors therefor
    • F25D2700/12Sensors measuring the inside temperature

Definitions

  • RNA to prevent or treat coronavirus infection.
  • the present disclosure relates to methods and agents for vaccination against coronavirus infection and inducing effective coronavirus antigen-specific immune responses such as antibody and/or T cell responses. These methods and agents are, in particular, useful for the prevention or treatment of coronavirus infection.
  • Administration of RNA disclosed herein to a subject can protect the subject against coronavirus infection.
  • the present disclosure relates to methods comprising administering to a subject RNA encoding a peptide or protein comprising an epitope of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein (S protein) for inducing an immune response against coronavirus S protein, in particular S protein of SARS-CoV-2, in the subject, i.e., vaccine RNA encoding vaccine antigen.
  • Administering to the subject RNA encoding vaccine antigen may provide (following expression of the RNA by appropriate target cells) vaccine antigen for inducing an immune response against vaccine antigen (and disease-associated antigen) in the subject.
  • the present disclosure further relates to the fields of packaging, transportation, and storage of temperature-sensitive materials, such as biological and/or pharmaceutical products.
  • Various aspects of such packaging, transportation, and storage are provided herein for ultra- low temperature materials useful for the treatment and/or prevention of disease.
  • the present disclosure also provides packaging materials, methods of transportation, and methods of storage for maintaining biological and/or pharmaceutical materials at ultra-low temperatures in order to maintain the integrity of the materials.
  • SARS-CoV-2 severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2
  • MERS Middle East respiratory syndrome
  • Coronaviruses are positive-sense, single-stranded RNA ((+)ssRNA) enveloped viruses that encode for a total of four structural proteins, spike protein (S), envelope protein (E), membrane protein (M) and nucleocapsid protein (INI).
  • S protein spike protein
  • E envelope protein
  • M membrane protein
  • II nucleocapsid protein
  • S protein spike protein
  • S protein is responsible for receptor-recognition, attachment to the cell, infection via the endosomal pathway, and the genomic release driven by fusion of viral and endosomal membranes. Though sequences between the different family members vary, there are conserved regions and motifs within the S protein making it possible to divide the S protein into two subdomains: S1 and S2.
  • the S1 domain recognizes the virus-specific receptor and binds to the target host cell.
  • the receptor binding domain (RBD) was identified and a general structure of the S protein defined ( Figure 1).
  • Vaccine approaches and therapeutics against SARS-CoV-2 are currently not available, but urgently needed.
  • naive S protein is a trimer and this trimeric structure has most likely an effect on the stability of the protein and the antigenicity
  • the present invention generally embraces the immunotherapeutic treatment of a subject comprising the administration of RNA, i.e., vaccine RNA, encoding an amino acid sequence, i.e., a vaccine antigen, comprising SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof, i.e., an antigenic peptide or protein.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises an epitope of SARS- CoV-2 S protein for inducing an immune response against coronavirus S protein, in particular SARS-CoV-2 S protein, in the subject.
  • RNA encoding vaccine antigen is administered to provide (following expression of the polynucleotide by appropriate target cells) antigen for induction, i.e., stimulation, priming and/or expansion, of an immune response, e.g., antibodies and/or immune effector cells, which is targeted to target antigen (coronavirus S protein, in particular SARS-CoV-2 S protein) or a procession product thereof.
  • an immune response e.g., antibodies and/or immune effector cells, which is targeted to target antigen (coronavirus S protein, in particular SARS-CoV-2 S protein) or a procession product thereof.
  • the immune response which is to be induced according to the present disclosure is a B cell-mediated immune response, i.e., an antibody-mediated immune response.
  • the immune response which is to be induced according to the present disclosure is a T cell-mediated immune response.
  • the immune response is an anti-coronavirus, in particular anti-SARS-CoV-2 immune response.
  • the vaccine described herein comprises as the active principle single-stranded RNA that may be translated into the respective protein upon entering cells of a recipient.
  • the RNA may contain one or more structural elements optimized for maximal efficacy of the RNA with respect to stability and translational efficiency (5' cap, 5' UTR, 3' UTR, poly(A)-tail).
  • the RNA contains all of these elements.
  • beta-S-ARCA(D1) m 2 7 ' 2'- 0 GppSpG
  • m 2 7,3'-0 Gppp(m 1 2'-0 )ApG may be utilized as specific capping structure at the 5'- end of the RNA drug substances.
  • the 5'-UTR sequence of the human alpha-globin mRNA optionally with an optimized 'Kozak sequence' to increase translational efficiency may be used.
  • 3'-UTR sequence a combination of two sequence elements (FI element) derived from the "amino terminal enhancer of split" (AES) mRNA (called F) and the mitochondrial encoded 12S ribosomal RNA (called I) placed between the coding sequence and the poly(A)-tail to assure higher maximum protein levels and prolonged persistence of the mRNA may be used. These were identified by an ex vivo selection process for sequences that confer RNA stability and augment total protein expression (see WO 2017/060314, herein incorporated by reference).
  • the 3'-UTR may be two re-iterated 3'-UTRs of the human beta-globin mRNA.
  • a poly(A)-tail measuring 110 nucleotides in length, consisting of a stretch of 30 adenosine residues, followed by a 10 nucleotide linker sequence (of random nucleotides) and another 70 adenosine residues may be used. This poly(A)-tail sequence was designed to enhance RNA stability and translational efficiency.
  • a secretory signal peptide may be fused to the antigen-encoding regions preferably in a way that the sec is translated as N terminal tag.
  • sec corresponds to the secreotory signal peptide of the S protein.
  • Sequences coding for short linker peptides predominantly consisting of the amino acids glycine (G) and serine (S), as commonly used for fusion proteins may be used as GS/Linkers.
  • the vaccine RNA described herein may be complexed with proteins and/or lipids, preferably lipids, to generate RN A-particles for administration. If a combination of different RNAs is used, the RNAs may be complexed together or complexed separately with proteins and/or lipids to generate RNA-particles for administration.
  • the invention relates to a composition or medical preparation comprising RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof.
  • an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein comprises the S1 subunit of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein, or the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the S1 subunit of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein.
  • the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof is able to form a multimeric complex, in particular a trimeric complex.
  • the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof may comprise a domain allowing the formation of a multimeric complex, in particular a trimeric complex of the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof.
  • the domain allowing the formation of a multimeric complex comprises a trimerization domain, for example, a trimerization domain as described herein.
  • the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof is encoded by a coding sequence which is codon-optimized and/orthe G/C content of which is increased compared to wild type coding sequence, wherein the codon-optimization and/or the increase in the G/C content preferably does not change the sequence of the encoded amino acid sequence.
  • the RNA encoding a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or
  • a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • the RNA encoding a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic
  • the RNA encoding a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or
  • a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7.
  • the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises a secretory signal peptide.
  • the secretory signal peptide is fused, preferably N-terminally, to a SARS- CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS- CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof.
  • the RNA encoding the secretory signal peptide comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or
  • the secretory signal peptide comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • the RNA encoding a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6; and/or
  • a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5.
  • the RNA is a modified RNA, in particular a stabilized mRNA.
  • the RNA comprises a modified nucleoside in place of at least one uridine.
  • the RNA comprises a modified nucleoside in place of each uridine.
  • the modified nucleoside is independently selected from pseudouridine ( ⁇ ), N1- methyl-pseudouridine (m1 ⁇ ) , and 5-methyl-uridine (m5U).
  • the RNA comprises a modified nucleoside in place of uridine.
  • the modified nucleoside is selected from pseudouridine ( ⁇ ), N1-methyl- pseudouridine (m1 ⁇ ) , and 5-methyl-uridine (m5U).
  • the RNA comprises a 5' cap.
  • the RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises a 5' UTR comprising the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 12, or a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 12.
  • the RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises a 3' UTR comprising the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 13, or a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 13.
  • the RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises a poly-A sequence.
  • the poly-A sequence comprises at least 100 nucleotides.
  • the poly-A sequence comprises or consists of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 14.
  • the RNA is formulated or is to be formulated as a liquid, a solid, or a combination thereof.
  • the RNA is formulated or is to be formulated for injection.
  • the RNA is formulated or is to be formulated for intramuscular administration.
  • the RNA is formulated or is to be formulated as particles.
  • the particles are lipid nanoparticles (LNP) or lipoplex (LPX) particles.
  • the LNP particles comprise ((4-hydroxybutyl)azanediyl)bis(hexane-6,l- diyl)bis(2-hexyldecanoate), 2-[(polyethylene glycol)-2000]-N,N-ditetradecylacetamide, 1,2- Distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine, and cholesterol.
  • the RNA lipoplex particles are obtainable by mixing the RNA with liposomes. In one embodiment, the RNA lipoplex particles are obtainable by mixing the RNA with lipids.
  • the RNA is formulated or is to be formulated as colloid. In one embodiment, the RNA is formulated or is to be formulated as particles, forming the dispersed phase of a colloid. In one embodiment, 50% or more, 75% or more, or 85% or more of the RNA are present in the dispersed phase. In one embodiment, the RNA is formulated or is to be formulated as particles comprising RNA and lipids. In one embodiment, the particles are formed by exposing RNA, dissolved in an aqueous phase, with lipids, dissolved in an organic phase. In one embodiment, the organic phase comprises ethanol.
  • the particles are formed by exposing RNA, dissolved in an aqueous phase, with lipids, dispersed in an aqueous phase.
  • the lipids dispersed in an aqueous phase form liposomes.
  • the RNA is mRNA or saRNA.
  • the composition or medical preparation is a pharmaceutical composition. In one embodiment, the composition or medical preparation is a vaccine.
  • the pharmaceutical composition further comprises one or more pharmaceutically acceptable carriers, diluents and/or excipients.
  • the composition or medical preparation is a kit.
  • the RNA and optionally the particle forming components are in separate vials.
  • the kit further comprises instructions for use of the composition or medical preparation for inducing an immune response against coronavirus in a subject.
  • the invention relates to the composition or medical preparation described herein for pharmaceutical use.
  • the pharmaceutical use comprises inducing an immune response against coronavirus in a subject.
  • the pharmaceutical use comprises a therapeutic or prophylactic treatment of a coronavirus infection.
  • composition or medical preparation described herein is for administration to a human.
  • the coronavirus is a betacoronavirus.
  • the coronavirus is a sarbecovirus.
  • the coronavirus is SARS-CoV-2.
  • the invention relates to a method of inducing an immune response against coronavirus in a subject comprising administering to the subject a composition comprising RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof.
  • an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein comprises the S1 subunit of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein, or the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the S1 subunit of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein.
  • the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof is able to form a multimeric complex, in particular a trimeric complex.
  • the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof may comprise a domain allowing the formation of a multimeric complex, in particular a trimeric complex of the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof.
  • the domain allowing the formation of a multimeric complex comprises a trimerization domain, for example, a trimerization domain as described herein.
  • the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof is encoded by a coding sequence which is codon-optimized and/orthe G/C content of which is increased compared to wild type coding sequence, wherein the codon-optimization and/or the increase in the G/C content preferably does not change the sequence of the encoded amino acid sequence.
  • the RNA encoding a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or
  • a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • the RNA encoding a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic
  • the RNA encoding a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or
  • a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7.
  • the amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises a secretory signal peptide.
  • the secretory signal peptide is fused, preferably N-terminally, to a SARS- CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS- CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof.
  • the RNA encoding the secretory signal peptide comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ.
  • the secretory signal peptide comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • the RNA encoding a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6; and/or
  • a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5,
  • the RNA is a modified RNA, in particular a stabilized mRNA.
  • the RNA comprises a modified nucleoside in place of at least one uridine.
  • the RNA comprises a modified nucleoside in place of each uridine.
  • the modified nucleoside is independently selected from pseudouridine ( ⁇ ), N1- methyl-pseudouridine (m1 ⁇ ) , and 5-methyl-uridine (m5U).
  • the RNA comprises a modified nucleoside in place of uridine.
  • the modified nucleoside is selected from pseudouridine ( ⁇ ), N1-methyl- pseudouridine (m1 ⁇ ) , and 5-methyl-uridine (m5U).
  • the RNA comprises a cap.
  • the RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises a 5' UTR comprising the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 12, or a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 12.
  • the RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises a 3' UTR comprising the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 13, or a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 13.
  • the RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof comprises a poly-A sequence.
  • the poly-A sequence comprises at least 100 nucleotides.
  • the poly-A sequence comprises or consists of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 14.
  • the RNA is formulated as a liquid, a solid, or a combination thereof.
  • the RNA is administered by injection.
  • the RNA is administered by intramuscular administration.
  • the RNA is formulated as particles.
  • the particles are lipid nanoparticles (LNP) or lipoplex (LPX) particles.
  • the LNP particles comprise ((4-hydroxybutyl)azanediyl)bis(hexane-6,1- diyl)bis(2-hexyldecanoate), 2-[(polyethylene glycol)-2000]-N,N-ditetradecylacetamide, 1,2- Distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine, and cholesterol.
  • the RNA lipoplex particles are obtainable by mixing the RNA with liposomes. In one embodiment, the RNA lipoplex particles are obtainable by mixing the RNA with lipids.
  • the RNA is formulated as colloid. In one embodiment, the RNA is formulated as particles, forming the dispersed phase of a colloid. In one embodiment, 50% or more, 75% or more, or 85% or more of the RNA are present in the dispersed phase. In one embodiment, the RNA is formulated as particles comprising RNA and lipids. In one embodiment, the particles are formed by exposing RNA, dissolved in an aqueous phase, with lipids, dissolved in an organic phase. In one embodiment, the organic phase comprises ethanol. In one embodiment, the particles are formed by exposing RNA, dissolved in an aqueous phase, with lipids, dispersed in an aqueous phase. In one embodiment, the lipids dispersed in an aqueous phase form liposomes.
  • the RNA is mRNA or saRNA.
  • the method is a method for vaccination against coronavirus.
  • the method is a method for therapeutic or prophylactic treatment of a coronavirus infection.
  • the subject is a human.
  • the coronavirus is a betacoronavirus.
  • the coronavirus is a sarbecovirus.
  • the coronavirus is SARS-CoV-2.
  • the composition is a composition described herein.
  • the invention relates to a composition or medical preparation described herein for use in a method described herein.
  • the present disclosure demonstrates that a composition comprising a lipid nanoparticle encapsulated mRNA encoding at least a portion (e.g., that is or comprises an epitope) of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide (e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein) can achieve detectable antibody titer against the epitope in serum within 7 days after administration to a population of adult human subjects according to a regimen that includes administration of at least one dose of the vaccine composition. Moreover, the present disclosure demonstrates persistence of such antibody titer.
  • a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein
  • a provided regimen includes at least one dose. In some embodiments, a provided regimen includes a first dose and at least one subsequent dose. In some embodiments, the first dose is the same amount as at least one subsequent dose. In some embodiments, the first dose is the same amount as all subsequent doses. In some embodiments, the first dose is a different amount as at least one subsequent dose. In some embodiments, the first dose is a different amount than all subsequent doses. In some embodiments, a provided regimen comprises two doses. In some embodiments, a provided regimen consists of two doses.
  • the immunogenic composition is formulated as a single-dose in a container, e.g., a vial.
  • the immunogenic composition is formulated as a multi-dose formulation in a vial.
  • the multi-dose formulation includes at least 2 doses per vial.
  • the multi-dose formulation includes a total of 2-20 doses per vial, such as, for example, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, or 12 doses per vial.
  • each dose in the vial is equal in volume.
  • a first dose is a different volume than a subsequent dose.
  • a “stable” multi-dose formulation exhibits no unacceptable levels of microbial growth, and substantially no or no breakdown or degradation of the active biological molecule component(s).
  • a “stable” immunogenic composition includes a formulation that remains capable of eliciting a desired immunologic response when administered to a subject.
  • the multi-dose formulation remains stable for a specified time with multiple or repeated inoculations/insertions into the multi-dose container.
  • the multi-dose formulation may be stable for at least three days with up to ten usages, when contained within a multi-dose container.
  • the multi-dose formulations remain stable with 2-20 inoculations/insertions.
  • administration of a composition comprising a lipid nanoparticle encapsulated mRNA encoding at least a portion (e.g., that is or comprises an epitope) of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide (e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein), e.g., according to a regimen as described herein, may result in lymphopenia in some subjects (e.g., in all subjects, in most subjects, in about 50% or fewer, in about 40% or fewer, in about 40% or fewer, in about 25% or fewer, in about 20% or fewer, in about 15% or fewer, in about 10% or fewer, in about 5% or fewer, etc).
  • a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein
  • lymphopenia can resolve over time.
  • lymphopenia resolves within about 14, about 10, about 9, about 8, about 7 days or less.
  • lymphopenia is Grade 3, Grade 2, or less.
  • compositions comprising a lipid nanoparticle encapsulated mRNA encoding at least a portion (e.g., that is or comprises an epitope) of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide (e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein) that are characterized, when administered to a relevant population of adults, to display certain characteristics (e.g., achieve certain effects) as described herein.
  • provided compositions may have been prepared, stored, transported, characterized, and/or used under conditions where temperature does not exceed a particular threshold.
  • provided compositions may have been protected from light (e.g., from certain wavelengths) during some or all of their preparation, storage, transport, characterization, and/or use.
  • one or more features of provided compositions e.g., mRNA stability, as may be assessed, for example, by one or more of size, presence of particular moiety or modification, etc; lipid nanoparticle stability or aggregation, pH, etc
  • compositions in which nucleotides within an mRNA are not modified are characterized (e.g., when administered to a relevant population, which may in some embodiments be or comprise an adult population), by an intrinsic adjuvant effect.
  • such composition and/or method can induce an antibody and/or a T cell response.
  • such a composition and/or method can induce a higher T cell response, as compared to conventional vaccines (e.g., non-mRNA vaccines such as protein vaccines).
  • compositions e.g., compositions comprising a lipid nanoparticle encapsulated mRNA encoding at least a portion (e.g., that is or comprises an epitope) of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide (e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein)) in which nucleotides within an mRNA are modified, and/or provided methods relating to such compositions, are characterized (e.g., when administered to a relevant population, which may in some embodiments be or comprise an adult population), by absence of an intrinsic adjuvant effect, or by a reduced intrinsic adjuvant effect as compared with an otherwise comparable composition (or method) with unmodified results.
  • a relevant population which may in some embodiments be or comprise an adult population
  • compositions (or methods) are characterized in that they (e.g., when administered to a relevant population, which may in some embodiments be or comprise an adult population) induce an antibody response and/or a CD4+ T cell response. Still further alternatively or additionally, in some embodiments, such compositions (or methods) are characterized in that they (e.g., when administered to a relevant population, which may in some embodiments be or comprise an adult population) induce a higher CD4+ T cell response than that observed with an alternative vaccine format (e.g., a peptide vaccine).
  • an alternative vaccine format e.g., a peptide vaccine
  • modified nucleotides may be present, for example, in a 3' UTR sequence, an antigen-encoding sequence, and/or a 5'UTR sequence.
  • modified nucleotides are or include one or more modified uracil residues and/or one or more modified cytosine residues.
  • compositions comprising a lipid nanoparticle encapsulated mRNA encoding at least a portion (e.g., that is or comprises an epitope) of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide (e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein)
  • a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein
  • sustained expression of an encoded polypeptide e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded protein [such as an S protein] or portion thereof, which portion, in some embodiments, may be or comprise an epitope thereof.
  • compositions and/or methods are characterized in that, when administered to a human, they achieve detectable polypeptide expression in a biological sample (e.g., serum) from such human and, in some embodiments, such expression persists for a period of time that is at least at least 36 hours or longer, including, e.g., at least 48 hours, at least 60 hours, at least 72 hours, at least 96 hours, at least 120 hours, at least 148 hours, or longer.
  • a biological sample e.g., serum
  • such expression persists for a period of time that is at least at least 36 hours or longer, including, e.g., at least 48 hours, at least 60 hours, at least 72 hours, at least 96 hours, at least 120 hours, at least 148 hours, or longer.
  • mRNA constructs encoding at least a portion (e.g., that is or comprises an epitope) of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide (e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein).
  • a SARS-CoV-2-encoded polypeptide e.g., of a SARS-CoV-2-encoded S protein.
  • the present disclosure particularly documents surprising and useful characteristics and/or advantages of certain mRNA constructs encoding a SARS-CoV-2 RBD portion and, in some embodiments, not encoding a full length SARS-CoV-2 S protein.
  • mRNA constructs that encode less than a full-length SARS-CoV-2 S protein, and particularly those that encode at least an RBD portion of such SARS-CoV-2 S protein may be particularly useful and/or effective for use as or in an immunogenic composition (e.g., a vaccine), and/or for achieving immunological effects as described herein (e.g., generation of SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies, and/or T cell responses (e.g., CD4+ and/or CD8+ T cell responses)).
  • an immunogenic composition e.g., a vaccine
  • T cell responses e.g., CD4+ and/or CD8+ T cell responses
  • the present disclosure provides an RNA (e.g., mRNA) comprising an open reading frame encoding a polypeptide that comprises a receptor-binding portion of a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, which RNA is suitable for intracellular expression of the polypeptide.
  • a polypeptide that comprises a receptor-binding portion of a SARS-CoV-2 S protein
  • RNA is suitable for intracellular expression of the polypeptide.
  • such an encoded polypeptide does not comprise the complete S protein.
  • the encoded polypeptide comprises the receptor binding domain (RBD), for example, as shown in SEQ ID NO: 5.
  • the encoded polypeptide comprises the peptide according to SEQ ID NO: 29 or 31.
  • such an RNA may be complexed by a (poly)cationic polymer, polyplex(es), protein(s) or peptide(s).
  • such an RNA may be formulated in a lipid nanoparticle (e.g., ones described herein).
  • such an RNA e.g., mRNA
  • RNA e.g., mRNA
  • mRNA may be useful for vaccinating humans (including, e.g., humans known to have been exposed and/or infected by SARS-CoV-2, and/or humans not known to have been exposed to SARS-CoV-2).
  • RNA constructs comprising a nucleic acid sequence that encodes a full-length SARS- CoV-2 Spike protein (e.g., including embodiments in which such encoded SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein may comprise at least one or more amino acid substitutions, e.g., proline substitutions as described herein, and/or embodiments in which the mRNA sequence is codon-optimized e.g., for mammalian, e.g., human, subjects).
  • such a full-length SARS- CoV-2 Spike protein may have an amino acid sequence that is or comprises that set forth in SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • mRNA constructs comprising a nucleic acid sequence that encodes a full-length SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein.
  • an immunogenic composition e.g., a vaccine
  • subject population e.g., particular age populations
  • such an mRNA composition may be particularly useful in younger (e.g., less than 25 years old, 20 years old, 18 years old, 15 years, 10 years old, or lower) subjects; alternatively or additionally, in some embodiments, such an mRNA composition may be particularly useful in elderly subjects (e.g., over 55 years old, 60 years old, 65 years old, 70 years old, 75 years old, 80 years old, 85 years old, or higher).
  • an immunogenic composition comprising such an mRNA construct provided herein exhibits a minimal to modest increase (e.g., no more than 30% increase, no more than 20% increase, or no more than 10% increase, or lower) in dose level and/or dose number-dependent systemic reactogenicity (e.g., fever, fatigue, headache, chills, diarrhea, muscle pain, and/or joint pain, etc.) and/or local tolerability (e.g., pain, redness, and/or swelling, etc.), at least in some subjects (e.g., in some subject age groups); in some embodiments, such reactogenicity and/or local tolerability is observed particularly, in in younger age group (e.g., less than 25 years old, 20 years old, 18 years years old or lower) subjects, and/or in older (e.g., elderly) age group (e.g., 65-85 years old).
  • a minimal to modest increase e.g., no more than 30% increase, no more than 20% increase, or no more than 10% increase, or lower
  • provided mRNA constructs that encode a full-length SARS-CoV-2 S protein may be particularly useful and/or effective for use as or in an immunogenic composition (e.g., a vaccine) for inducing SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody response level in a population of subjects that are at high risk for severe dieases associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection (e.g., an elderly population, for example, 65-85 year-old group).
  • an immunogenic composition e.g., a vaccine
  • a person of ordinary skill, reading the present disclosure will appreciate, among other things, that provided mRNA constructs that encode a full-length SARS-CoV-2 S protein, which exhibit a favorable reactogenicity profile (e.g., as described herein) in younger and elderly age populations, may be particularly useful and/or effective for use as or in an immunogenic composition (e.g., a vaccine) for achieving immunological effects as described herein (e.g., generation of SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies, and/or T cell responses (e.g., CD4+ and/or CD8+ T cell responses)).
  • an immunogenic composition e.g., a vaccine
  • T cell responses e.g., CD4+ and/or CD8+ T cell responses
  • the present disclosure also suggests that provided mRNA constructs that encode a full-lenth SARS-CoV-2 S protein may be particularly effective to protect against SARS-CoV-2 infection, as characterized by earlier clearance of SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA in non-human mammalian subjects (e.g., rhesus macaques) that were immunized with immunogenic compositions comprising such mRNA constructs and subsequently challenged by SARS-CoV-2 strain.
  • such earlier clearance of SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA may be observed in the nose of non-human mammalian subjects (e.g., rhesus macaques) that were immunized with immunogenic compositions comprising such mRNA constructs and subsequently challenged by SARS-CoV-2 strain.
  • the present disclosure provides an RNA (e.g., mRNA) comprising an open reading frame encoding a full-length SARS-CoV-2 S protein (e.g., a full-length SARS-CoV- 2 S protein with one or more amino acid substitutions), which RNA is suitable for intracellular expression of the polypeptide.
  • the encoded polypeptide comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ. ID NO:_7.
  • such an RNA e.g., mRNA
  • an RNA may be formulated in a lipid nanoparticle (e.g., ones described herein).
  • an immunogenic composition provided herein may comprise a plurality of (e.g., at least two or more, including, e.g., at least three, at least four, at least five, at least six, at least seven, at least eight, at least nine, at least ten, etc.) immunoreactive epitopes of a SARS-CoV-2 polypeptide or variants thereof.
  • a plurality of immunoreactive epitopes may be encoded by a plurality of RNAs (e.g., mRNAs).
  • such a plurality of immunoreactive epitopes may be encoded by a single RNA (e.g., mRNA).
  • nucleic acid sequences encoding a plurality of immunoreactive epitopes may be separated from each other in a single RNA (e.g., mRNA) by a linker (e.g., a peptide linker in some embodiments).
  • provided polyepitope immunogenic compositions may be particularly useful, when considering the genetic diversity of SARS-CoV-2 variants, to provide protection against numerous viral variants and/or may offer a greater opportunity for development of a diverse and/or otherwise robust (e.g., persistent, e.g., detectable about 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60 or more days after administration of one or more doses) neutralizing antibody and/or T cell response, and in particular a particularly robust T H 1-type T cell (e.g., CD4+ and/or CD8+ T cell) response.
  • a diverse and/or otherwise robust e.g., persistent, e.g., detectable about 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 55, 60 or more days after administration of one or more doses
  • T H 1-type T cell e.g., CD4+ and/or CD8+ T cell
  • compositions and/or methods are characterized by (e.g., when administered to a relevant population, which may in some embodiments be or comprise an adult population) in that they achieve one or more particular therapeutic outcomes (e.g., effective immune responses as described herein and/or detectable expression of encoded SARS-CoV-2 S protein or an immunogenic fragment thereof) with a single administration; in some such embodiments, an outcome may be assessed, for example, as compared to that observed in absence of mRNA vaccines described herein. In some embodiments, a particular outcome may be achieved at a lower dose than required for one or more alternative strategies.
  • therapeutic outcomes e.g., effective immune responses as described herein and/or detectable expression of encoded SARS-CoV-2 S protein or an immunogenic fragment thereof
  • an outcome may be assessed, for example, as compared to that observed in absence of mRNA vaccines described herein.
  • a particular outcome may be achieved at a lower dose than required for one or more alternative strategies.
  • the present disclosure provides an immunogenic composition
  • an isolated messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) polynucleotide wherein the isolated mRNA polynucleotide comprises an open reading frame encoding a polypeptide that comprises a receptor-binding portion of a SARs-CoV-2 S protein, and wherein the isolated mRNA polynucleotide is formulated in at least one lipid nanoparticle.
  • mRNA messenger ribonucleic acid
  • such a lipid nanoparticle may comprise a molar ratio of 20-60% ionizable cationic lipid, 5-25% non-cationic lipid (e.g., neutral lipid), 25-55% sterol or steroid, and 0.5- 15% polymer-conjugated lipid (e.g., PEG-modified lipid).
  • a sterol or steroid included in a lipid nanoparticle may be or comprise cholesterol.
  • a neutral lipid may be or comprise 1,2-distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine (DSPC).
  • a polymer-conjugated lipid may be or comprise PEG2000 DMG.
  • such an immunogenic composition may comprise a total lipid content of about 1 mg to 10 mg, or 3 mg to 8 mg, or 4 mg to 6 mg. In some embodiments, such an immunogenic composition may comprise a total lipid content of about 5 mg/mL -15 mg/mL or 7.5 mg/mL- 12.5 mg/mL or 9-11 mg/mL.
  • such an isolated mRNA polynucleotide is provided in an effective amount to induce an immune response in a subject administered at least one dose of the immunogenic composition.
  • a polypeptide encoded by a provided isolated mRNA polynucleotide does not comprise the complete S protein.
  • such an isolated mRNA polynucleotide provided in an immunogenic composition is not self-replicating RNA.
  • an immune response may comprise generation of a binding antibody titer against SARS-CoV-2 protein (including, e.g., a stabilized prefusion spike trimer in some embodiments) or a fragment thereof.
  • an immune response may comprise generation of a binding antibody titer against the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein.
  • a provided immunogenic composition has been established to achieve a detectable binding antibody titer after administration of a first dose, with seroconversion in at least 70% (including, e.g., at least 80%, at least 90%, at least 95% and up to 100%) of a population of subjects receiving such a provided immunogenic composition, for example, by about 2 weeks.
  • an immune response may comprise generation of a neutralizing antibody titer against SARS-CoV-2 protein (including, e.g., a stabilized prefusion spike trimer in some embodiments) or a fragment thereof.
  • an immune response may comprise generation of a neutralizing antibody titer against the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein.
  • a provided immunogenic composition has been established to achieve a neutralizing antibody titer in an appropriate system (e.g., in a human infected with SARS-CoV-2 and/or a population thereof, and/or in a model system therefor).
  • such neutralizing antibody titer may have been demonstrated in one or more of a population of humans, a non-human primate model (e.g., rhesus macaques), and/or a mouse model.
  • a neutralizing antibody titer is a titer that is (e.g., that has been established to be) sufficient to reduce viral infection of B cells relative to that observed for an appropriate control (e.g., an unvaccinated control subject, or a subject vaccinated with a live attenuated viral vaccine, an inactivated viral vaccine, or a protein subunit viral vaccine, or a combination thereof). In some such embodiments, such reduction is of at least 30%, 35%, 40%, 45%, 50%, 55%, 60%, 65%, 70%, 75%, 80%, 85%, 90%, 95%, or more.
  • a neutralizing antibody titer is a titer that is (e.g., that has been established to be) sufficient to reduce the rate of asymptomatic viral infection relative to that observed for an appropriate control (e.g., an unvaccinated control subject, or a subject vaccinated with a live attenuated viral vaccine, an inactivated viral vaccine, or a protein subunit viral vaccine, or a combination thereof).
  • an appropriate control e.g., an unvaccinated control subject, or a subject vaccinated with a live attenuated viral vaccine, an inactivated viral vaccine, or a protein subunit viral vaccine, or a combination thereof.
  • such reduction is of at least 30%, 35%, 40%, 45%, 50%, 55%, 60%, 65%, 70%, 75%, 80%, 85%, 90%, 95%, or more.
  • such reduction can be characterized by assessment of SARS- CoV-2 N protein serology.
  • a neutralizing antibody titer is a titer that is (e.g., that has been established to be) sufficient to reduce or block fusion of virus with epithelial cells and/or B cells of a vaccinated subject relative to that observed for an appropriate control (e.g., an unvaccinated control subject, or a subject vaccinated with a live attenuated viral vaccine, an inactivated viral vaccine, or a protein subunit viral vaccine, or a combination thereof). In some such embodiments, such reduction is of at least 30%, 35%, 40%, 45%, 50%, 55%, 60%, 65%, 70%, 75%, 80%, 85%, 90%, 95%, or more.
  • induction of a neutralizing antibody titer may be characterized by an elevation in the number of B cells, which in some embodiments may include plasma cells, class-switched IgG1- and lgG2-positive B cells, and/or germinal center B cells.
  • a provided immunogenic composition has been established to achieve such an elevation in the number of B cells in an appropriate system (e.g., in a human infected with SARS-CoV-2 and/or a population thereof, and/or in a model system therefor).
  • such an elevation in the number of B cells may have been demonstrated in one or more of a population of humans, a non-human primate model (e.g., rhesus macaques), and/or a mouse model.
  • such an elevation in the number of B cells may have been demonstrated in draining lymph nodes and/or spleen of a mouse model after (e.g., at least 7 days, at least 8 days, at least 9 days, at least 10 days, at least 11 days, at least 12 days, at least 13 days, at least 14 days, after) immunization of such a mouse model with a provided immunogenic composition.
  • induction of a neutralizing antibody titer may be characterized by a reduction in the number of circulating B cells in blood.
  • a provided immunogenic composition has been established to achieve such a reduction in the number of circulating B cells in blood of an appropriate system (e.g., in a human infected with SARS-CoV- 2 and/or a population thereof, and/or in a model system therefor).
  • an appropriate system e.g., in a human infected with SARS-CoV- 2 and/or a population thereof, and/or in a model system therefor.
  • such a reduction in the number of circulating B cells in blood may have been demonstrated in one or more of a population of humans, a non-human primate model (e.g., rhesus macaques), and/or a mouse model.
  • such a reduction in the number of circulating B cells in blood may have been demonstrated in a mouse model after (e.g., at least 4 days, at least 5 days, at least 6 days, at least 7 days, at least 8 days, at least 9 days, at least 10 days, after) immunization of such a mouse model with a provided immunogenic composition.
  • a reduction in circulating B cells in blood may be due to B cell homing to lymphoid compartments.
  • an immune response induced by a provided immunogenic composition may comprise an elevation in the number of T cells.
  • such an elevation in the number of T cells may include an elevation in the number of T follicular helper (T FH ) cells, which in some embodiments may comprise one or more subsets with ICOS upregulation.
  • T FH T follicular helper
  • a provided immunogenic composition has been established to achieve such an elevation in the number of T cells (e.g., T FH cells) in an appropriate system (e.g., in a human infected with SARS-CoV-2 and/or a population thereof, and/or in a model system therefor).
  • T cells e.g., T FH cells
  • an appropriate system e.g., in a human infected with SARS-CoV-2 and/or a population thereof, and/or in a model system therefor.
  • such an elevation in the number of T cells may have been demonstrated in one or more of a population of humans, a non-human primate model (e.g., rhesus macaques), and/or a mouse model.
  • such an elevation in the number of T cells may have been demonstrated in draining lymph nodes, spleen, and/or blood of a mouse model after (e.g., at least 4 days, at least 5 days, at least 6 days, at least 7 days, at least 8 days, at least 9 days, at least 10 days, at least 11 days, at least 12 days, at least 13 days, at least 14 days, after) immunization of such a mouse model with a provided immunogenic composition.
  • a protective response against SARS-CoV-2 induced by a provided immunogenic composition has been established in an appropriate model system for SARS- CoV-2.
  • such a protective response may have been demonstrated in an animal model, e.g., a non-human primate model (e.g., rhesus macaques) and/or a mouse model.
  • a non-human primate e.g., rhesus macaque
  • a polulation thereof that has/have received at least one immunization with a provided immunogenic composition is/are challenged with SARS-CoV-2, e.g., through intranasal and/or intratracheal route.
  • such a challenge may be performed several weeks (e.g., 5-10 weeks) after at least one immunization (including, e.g., at least two immunizations) with a provided immunogenic composition.
  • such a challenge may be performed when a detectable level of a SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing titer (e.g., antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and/or a fragment thereof, including, e.g., but not limited to a stabilized prefusion spike trimer, S-2P, and/or antibody response to receptor-binding portion of SARS-CoV-2) is achieved in non-human primate(s) (e.g., rhesus macaque(s)) that has received at least one immunization (including, e.g., at least two immunizations) with a provided immunogenic composition.
  • a SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing titer e.g., antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and/or
  • a protective response is characterized by absence of or reduction in detectable viral RNA in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) and/or nasal swabs of challenged non-human primate(s) (e.g., rhesus macaque(s)).
  • BAL bronchoalveolar lavage
  • nasal swabs of challenged non-human primate(s) e.g., rhesus macaque(s)
  • immunogenic compositions described herein may have been characterized in that a larger percent of challenged animals, for example, non-human primates in a population (e.g., rhesus macaques), that have received at least one immunization (including, e.g., at least two immunizations) with a provided immunogenic composition display absence of detectable RNA in their BAL and/or nasal swab, as compared to a population of non-immunized animals, for example, non-human primates (e.g., rhesus macaques).
  • a population e.g., rhesus macaques
  • immunization including, e.g., at least two immunizations
  • immunogenic compositions described herein may have been characterized in that challenged animals, for example, non-human in a population (e.g., rhesus macaques), that have received at least one immunization (including, e.g., at least two immunizations) with a provided immunogenic composition may show clearance of viral RNA in nasal swab no later than 10 days, including, e.g., no later than 8 days, no later than 6 days, no later than 4 days, etc., as compared to a population of non-immunized animals, for example, non-human primates (e.g., rhesus macaques).
  • non-human in a population e.g., rhesus macaques
  • immunization including, e.g., at least two immunizations
  • a provided immunogenic composition may show clearance of viral RNA in nasal swab no later than 10 days, including, e.g., no later than 8 days, no later
  • immunogenic compositions described herein when administered tosubjects in need thereof do not substantially increase the risk of vaccine-associated enhanced respiratory disease.
  • vaccine-associated enhanced respiratory disease may be associated with antibody-dependent enhancement of replication and/or with vaccine antigens that induced antibodies with poor neutralizing activity and Un- biased responses.
  • immunogenic compositions described herein when administered to subjects in need thereof do not substantially increase the risk of antibody- dependent enhancement of replication.
  • a single dose of an mRNA composition can induce a therapeutic antibody response in less than 10 days of vaccination.
  • such a therapeutic antibody response may be characterized in that when such an mRNA vaccine can induce production of about 10-100 ug/mL IgG measured at 10 days after vaccination at a dose of 0.1 to 10 ug or 0.2- 5 ug in an animal model.
  • such a therapeutic antibody response may be characterized in that such an mRNA vaccine induces about 100-1000 ug/mL IgG measured at 20 days of vaccination at a dose of 0.1 to 10 ug or 0.2- 5 ug in an animal model.
  • a single dose may induce a pseudovirus-neutralization titer, as measured in an animal model, of 10-200 pVN50 titer 15 days after vaccination. In some embodiments, a single dose may induce a pseudovirus- neutralization titer, as measured in an animal model, of 50-500 pVN50 titer 15 days after vaccination.
  • a single dose of an mRNA composition can expand antigen-specific CD8 and/or CD4 T cell response by at least at 50% or more (including, e.g., at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90%, at least 95%, or more), as compared to that observed in absence of such an mRNA construct encoding a SARS-COV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof (e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain).
  • a SARS-COV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain
  • a single dose of an mRNA composition can expand antigen-specific CD8 and/or CD4 T cell response by at least at 1.5-fold or more (including, e.g., at least 2-fold, at least 3-fold, at least 5-fold, at least 10-fold, at least 50-fold, at least 100-fold, at least 500-fold, at least 1000-fold, or more), as compared to that observed in absence of such an mRNA construct encoding a SARS-COV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof (e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain).
  • a SARS-COV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain
  • a regimen e.g., a single dose of an mRNA composition
  • T cells that exhibit a Th1 phenotype (e.g., as characterized by expression of IFN-gamma, IL-2, IL- 4, and/or IL-5) by at least at 50% or more (including, e.g., at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90%, at least 95%, or more), as compared to that observed in absence of such an mRNA construct encoding a SARS-COV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof (e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain).
  • a SARS-COV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain
  • a regimen e.g., a single dose of an mRNA composition
  • T cells that exhibit a Th1 phenotype (e.g., as characterized by expression of IFN-gamma, IL-2, IL-4, and/or IL-5), for example by at least at 1.5-fold or more (including, e.g., at least 2-fold, at least 3-fold, at least 5-fold, at least 10-fold, at least 50-fold, at least 100-fold, at least 500-fold, at least 1000-fold, or more), as compared to that observed in absence of such an mRNA construct encoding a SARS-COV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof (e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain).
  • a SARS-COV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain
  • a T-cell phenotype may be or comprise a Th1-dominant cytokine profile (e.g., as characterized by INF-gamma positive and/or IL-2 positive), and/or no by or biologically insignificant IL-4 secretion.
  • Th1-dominant cytokine profile e.g., as characterized by INF-gamma positive and/or IL-2 positive
  • a regimen as described herein induces and/or achieves production of RBD-specific CD4+ T cells.
  • mRNA compositions encoding an RBD- containing portion of a SARS-CoV-2 spike protein may be particularly useful and/or effective in such induction and/or production of RBD-specific CD4+ T cells.
  • RBD-specific CD4+ T-cells induced by an mRNA composition described herein demonstrate a Th1- dominant cytokine profile (e.g., as characterized by INF-gamma positive and/or IL-2 positive), and/or by no or biologically insignificant IL-4 secretion.
  • characterization of CD4+ and/or CD8+ T cell responses (e.g., described herein) in subjects receiving mRNA compositions (e.g., as described herein) may be performed using ex vivo assays using PBMCs collected from the subjects, e.g., assays as described in the Examples.
  • immunogenicity of mRNA compositions described herein may be assessed by one of or more of the following serological immunongenicity assays: detection of IgG, IgM, and/or IgA to SARS-CoV-2 S protein present in blood samples of a subject receiving a provided mRNA composition, and/or neutralization assays using SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus and/or a wild-type SARS-CoV-2 virus.
  • an mRNA composition (e.g., as described herein) provide a relatively low adverse effect (e.g., Grade 1-Grade 2 pain, redness and/or swelling) within 7 days after vaccinations at a dose of 10 ug - 100 ug or 1 ug-50 ug.
  • mRNA compositions (e.g., as described herein) provide a relatively low observation of systemic events (e.g., Grade 1-Grade 2 fever, fatigue, headache, chills, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle pain, joint pain, medication, and combinations thereof ) within 7 days after vaccinations at a dose of 10 ug - 100 ug.
  • mRNA compositions are characterized in that when administered to subjects at 10-100 ug dose or 1 ug-50 ug, IgG directed to a SARS-CoV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof (e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain) may be produced at a level of 100-100,000 U/mL or 500-50,000 U/mL 21 days after vaccination.
  • IgG directed to a SARS-CoV2 immunogenic protein or fragment thereof e.g., spike protein and/or receptor binding domain
  • an mRNA encodes a natively-folded trimeric receptor binding protein of SARS-CoV-2. In some embodiments, an mRNA encodes a variant of such receptor binding protein such that the encoded variant binds to ACE2 at a Kd of 10 pM or lower, including, e.g., at a Kd of 9 pM, 8 pM, 7 pM, 6 pM, 5 pM, 4 pM, or lower. In some embodiments, an mRNA encodes a variant of such receptor binding protein such that the encoded variant binds to ACE2 at a Kd of 5 pM.
  • an mRNA encodes a trimeric receptor binding portion of SARS-CoV-2 that comprises an ACE2 receptor binding site.
  • an mRNA comprises a coding sequence for a receptor-binding portion of SARS-CoV-2 and a trimerization domain (e.g., a natural trimerization domain (foldon) of T4 fibritin) such that the coding sequence directs expression of a trimeric protein that has an ACE2 receptor binding site and binds ACE2.
  • an mRNA encodes a trimeric receptor binding portion of SARS-CoV-2 ora variant thereof such that its Kd is smaller than that for a monomeric receptor-binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2.
  • RBD monomeric receptor-binding domain
  • an mRNA encodes a trimeric receptor binding portion of SARS-CoV-2 or a variant thereof such that its Kd is at least 10-fold (including, e.g., at least 50-fold, at least 100-fold, at least 500-fold, at least 1000-fold, etc.) smaller than that for a RBD of SARS-CoV-2.
  • a trimer receptor binding portion of SARS-CoV-2 encoded by an mRNA may be determined to have a size of about 3-4 angstroms when it is complexed with ACE2 and B 0 AT1 neutral amino acid acid transporter in a closed conformation, as characterized by electron cryomicroscopy (cryoEM).
  • geometric mean SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing titer that characterizes and/or is achieved by an mRNA composition or method as described herein can reach at least 1.5-fold, including, at least 2-fold, at least 2.5-fold, at least 3-fold, or higher, that of a COVID-19 convalescent human panel (e.g., a panel of sera from COVID-19 convalescing humans obtained 20-40 days after the onset of symptoms and at least 14 days after the start of asymptomatic convalescence.
  • a COVID-19 convalescent human panel e.g., a panel of sera from COVID-19 convalescing humans obtained 20-40 days after the onset of symptoms and at least 14 days after the start of asymptomatic convalescence.
  • mRNA compositions as provided herein may be characterized in that subjects who have been treated with such compositions (e.g., with at least one dose, at least two doses, etc) may show reduced and/or more transient presence of viral RNA in relevant site(s) (e.g., nose and/or lungs, etc, and/or any other tissue susceptible to infection) as compared with an appropriate control (e.g., an established expected level for a comparable subject or population not having been so treated and having been exposed to virus under reasonably comparable exposure conditions)
  • relevant site(s) e.g., nose and/or lungs, etc, and/or any other tissue susceptible to infection
  • the RBD antigen expressed by an mRNA construct can be modified by addition of a T4-fibritin-derived "foldon" trimerization domain, for example, to increase its immunogenicity.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that certain local reactions (e.g., pain, redness, and/or swelling, etc.) and/or systemic events (e.g., fever, fatigue, headache, etc.) may appear and/or peak at Day 2 after vaccination.
  • mRNA compositions described herein are characterized in that certain local reactions (e.g., pain, redness, and/or swelling, etc.) and/or systemic events (e.g., fever, fatigue, headache, etc.) may resolve by Day 7 after vaccination.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that no Grade 1 or greater change in routine clinical laboratory values or laboratory abnormalities are observed in subjects receiving mRNA compositions (e.g., as described herein).
  • clinical laboratory assays may include lymphocyte count, hematological changes, etc.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that by 21 days after a first dose (e.g., 10-100 ug inclusive or 1 ug-50 ug inclusive), geometric mean concentrations (GMCs) of IgG directed to a SARS-CoV-2 S polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) may reach 200-3000 units/mL or 500-3000 units/mL or 500-2000 units/mL, compared to 602 units/mL for a panel of COVID- 19 convalescent human sera.
  • a first dose e.g., 10-100 ug inclusive or 1 ug-50 ug inclusive
  • GMCs geometric mean concentrations
  • IgG directed to a SARS-CoV-2 S polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) may reach 200-3000 units/mL or 500-3000 units/mL or 500-2000 units/mL, compared to 602 units/mL for a panel of COVI
  • mRNA compositions described herein are characterized in that by 7 days after a second dose (e.g., 10-30 ug inclusive; or 1 ug-50 ug inclusive), geometric mean concentrations (GMCs) of IgG directed to a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) may increase by at least 8-fold or higher, including, e.g., at least 9-fold, at least 10-fold, at least 15-fold, at least 20-fold, at least 25-fold, at least 30-fold, at least 35-fold, at least 40-fold, or higher.
  • mRNA compositions described herein are characterized in that by 7 days after a second dose (e.g., 10-30 ug inclusive; or 1 ug-50 ug inclusive), geometric mean concentrations (GMCs) of IgG directed to a SARS-CoV-2 S polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) may increase to 1500 units/mL to 40,000 units/mL or 4000 units/mL to 40,000 units/mL.
  • a second dose e.g. 10-30 ug inclusive; or 1 ug-50 ug inclusive
  • GMCs geometric mean concentrations
  • IgG directed to a SARS-CoV-2 S polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof e.g., RBD
  • antibody concentrations described herein can persist to at least 20 days or longer, including, e.g., at least 25 days, at least 30 days, at least 35 days, at least 40 days, at least 45 days, at least 50 days, after a first dose, or at least 10 days or longer, including, e.g., at least 15 days, at least 20 days, at least 25 days, or longer, after a second dose. In some embodiments, antibody concentrations can persist to 35 days after a first dose, or at least 14 days after a second dose.
  • mRNA compositions described herein are characterized in that when measured at 7 days after a second dose (e.g., 1-50 ug inclusive), GMC of IgG directed to a SARS-CoV-2 S polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) is at least 30% higher (including, e.g., at least 40% higher, at least 50% higher, at least 60%, higher, at least 70% higher, at least 80% higher, at least 90% higher, at least 95 % higher, as compared to antibody concentrations observed in a panel of COVID-19 convalescent human serum.
  • geometric mean concentration (GMC) of IgG described herein is GMCs of RBD- binding IgG.
  • mRNA compositions described herein are characterized in that when measured at 7 days after a second dose (e.g., 10-50 ug inclusive), GMC of IgG directed to a SARS-CoV-2 S polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) is at least 1.1-fold higher (including, e.g., at least 1.5-fold, at least 2-fold, at least 3-fold, at least 4-fold, at least 5-fold, at least 6-fold higher, at least 7-fold higher, at least 8-fold higher, at least 9-fold higher, at least 10-fold higher, at least 15-fold higher, at least 20-fold higher, at least 25-fold higher, at least 30-fold higher), as compared to antibody concentrations observed in a panel of COVID- 19 convalescent human serum,
  • geometric mean concentration (GMC) of IgG described herein is GMCs of RBD-binding IgG.
  • mRNA compositions described herein are characterized in that when measured at 21 days after a second dose, GMC of IgG directed to a SARS-CoV-2 S polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) is at least 5-fold higher (including, e.g., at least 6-fold higher, at least 7-fold higher, at least 8-fold higher, at least 9-fold higher, at least 10-fold higher, at least 15-fold higher, at least 20-fold higher, at least 25-fold higher, at least 30-fold higher), as compared to antibody concentrations observed in a panel of COVID-19 convalescent human serum,
  • geometric mean concentration (GMC) of IgG described herein is GMCs of RBD-binding IgG.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that an increase (e.g., at least 30%, at least 40%, at least 50%, or more) in SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing geometric mean titers (GMTs) is observed 21 days after a first dose.
  • mRNA compositions described herein are characterized in that a substantially greater serum neutralizing GMTs are achieved 7 days after subjects receive a second dose (e.g., 10 mg-30 mg inclusive), reaching 150-300, compared to 94 for a COVID-19 convalescent serum panel.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that 7 days after administration of the second dose, the protective efficacy is at least 60%, e.g., at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90, or at least 95%. In one embodiment, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that 7 days after administration of the second dose, the protective efficacy is at least 70%. In one embodiment, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that 7 days after administration of the second dose, the protective efficacy is at least 80%. In one embodiment, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that 7 days after administration of the second dose, the protective efficacy is at least 90%. In one embodiment, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that 7 days after administration of the second dose, the protective efficacy is at least 95%.
  • an RNA composition provided herein is characterized in that it induces an immune response against SARS-CoV-2 after at least 7 days after a dose (e.g., after a second dose). In some embodiments, an RNA composition provided herein is characterized in that it induces an immune response against SARS-CoV-2 in less than 14 days after a dose (e.g., after a second dose). In some embodiments, an RNA composition provided herein is characterized in that it induces an immune response against SARS-CoV-2 after at least 7 days after a vaccination regimen. In some embodiments, a vaccination regimen comprises a first dose and a second dose. In some embodiments, a first dose and a second dose are administered by at least 21 days apart. In some such embodiments, an immune response against SARS-CoV-2 is induced at least after 28 days after a first dose.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that geometric mean concentration (GMCs) of antibodies directed to a SARS- CoV-2 spike polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD), as measured in serum from subjects receiving mRNA compositions of the present disclosure (e.g., at a dose of 10-30 ug inclusive), is substantially higher than in a convalescent serum panel (e.g., as described herein).
  • GMCs geometric mean concentration
  • geometric mean concentration (GMCs) of antibodies directed to a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD), as measured in serum from the subject may be 8.0-fold to 50-fold higher than a convalescent serum panel GMC.
  • geometric mean concentration (GMCs) of antibodies directed to a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD), as measured in serum from the subject may be at least 8.0-fold or higher, including, e.g., at least 10-fold, at least 20-fold, at least 30-fold, at least 40-fold, at least 50-fold, at least 60-fold or higher, as compared to a convalescent serum panel GMC.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that the SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing geometric mean titer, as measured at 28 days after a first dose or 7 days after a second dose, may be at least 1.5-fold or higher (including, e.g., at least 2-fold, at least 2.5-fold, at least 3-fold, at least 3.5-fold or higher), as compared to a neutralizing GMT of a convalescent serum panel.
  • a regimen administered to a subject may be or comprise a single dose.
  • a regimen administered to a subject may comprise a plurality of doses (e.g., at least two doses, at least three doses, or more).
  • a regimen administered to a subject may comprise a first dose and a second dose, which are given at least 2 weeks apart, at least 3 weeks apart, at least 4 weeks apart, or more.
  • such doses may be at least 1 month, at least 2 months, at least 3 months, at least 4 months, at least 5 months, at least 6 months, at least 7 months, at least 8 months, at least 9 months, at least 10 months, at least 11 months, at least 12 months, or more apart.
  • doses may be administered days apart, such as 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 ,10,
  • doses may be administered about 1 to about 3 weeks apart, or about 1 to about 4 weeks apart, or about 1 to about 5 weeks apart, or about 1 to about 6 weeks apart, or about 1 to more than 6 weeks apart.
  • doses may be separated by a period of about 7 to about 60 days, such as for example about 14 to about 48 days, etc.
  • a minimum number of days between doses may be about 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 or more.
  • a maximum number of days between doses may be about 60, 59, 58, 57, 56,
  • doses may be about 21 to about 28 days apart. In some embodiments, doses may be about 19 to about 42 days apart. In some embodiments, doses may be about 7 to about 28 days apart. In some embodiments, doses may be about 14 to about 24 days. In some embodiments, doses may be about 21 to about 42 days.
  • a provided composition is established to achieve elevated antibody and/or T- cell titres (e.g., specific for a relevant portion of a SARS-CoV-2 spike protein) for a period of time longer than about 3 weeks; in some such embodiments, a dosing regimen may involve only a single dose, or may involve two or more doses, which may, in some embodiments, be separated from one another by a period of time that is longer than about 21 days or three weeks.
  • such period of time may be about 4 weeks, 5 weeks, 6 weeks 7 weeks, 8 weeks, 9 weeks, 10 weeks, 11 weeks, 12 weeks, 13 weeks, 14 weeks, 15 wees, 16 weeks, 17 weeks, 18 weeks, 19 weeks, 20 weeks or more, or about 1 month, 2 months, 3 months, 4 months, 5 months, 6 months, 7 months, 8 months, 9 months, 10, months, 11 months, 12 months or more, or in some embodiments about a year or more.
  • a first dose and a second dose may be administered by intramuscular injection.
  • a first dose and a second dose may be administered in the deltoid muscle.
  • a first dose and a second dose may be administered in the same arm.
  • an mRNA composition described herein is administered (e.g., by intramuscular injection) as a series of two doses (e.g., 0.3 mL each) 21 days part.
  • each dose is about 30 ug.
  • each dose may be higher than 30 ug, e.g., about 40 ug, about 50 ug, about 60 ug.
  • each dose may be lower than 30 ug, e.g., about 20 ug, about 10 ug, about 5 ug, etc.
  • each dose is about 3 ug or lower, e.g., about 1 ug.
  • an mRNA composition described herein is administered to subjects of age 16 or older (including, e.g., 16-85 years).
  • an mRNA composition described herein is administered to subjects of age 18-55.
  • an mRNA composition escribed herein is administered to subjects of age 56- 85.
  • an mRNA composition described herein is administered (e.g., by intramuscular injection) as a single dose.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that RBD-specific IgG (e.g., polyclonal response) induced by such mRNA compositions and/or methods exhibit a higher binding affinity to RBD, as compared to a reference human monoclonal antibody with SARS-CoV-2 RBD-binding affinity (e.g., CR3022 as described in J. ter Meulen et al., PLOS Med. 3, e237 (2006).)
  • RBD-specific IgG e.g., polyclonal response
  • SARS-CoV-2 RBD-binding affinity e.g., CR3022 as described in J. ter Meulen et al., PLOS Med. 3, e237 (2006).
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity across a panel (e.g., at least 10, at least 15, or more) of SARs-CoV-2 spike variants.
  • a panel e.g., at least 10, at least 15, or more
  • such SARs-CoV-2 spike variants include mutations in RBD (e.g., but not limited to Q321L, V341I, A348T, N354D, S359N, V367F, K378R, R408I, Q409E, A435S, N439K, K458R, I472V, G476S, S477N, V483A, Y508H, H519P, etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1), and/or mutations in spike protein (e.g., but not limited to D614G, etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • RBD e.g., but not limited to Q321L, V341I, A348T, N354D, S359N, V367F, K378R, R408I, Q409E, A435S, N439K, K458R, I472V, G476S, S
  • spike variants e.g., the Table of mutating sites in Spike maintained by the COVID-19 Viral Genome Analysis Pipeline and found at https://cov.lanl.gov/components/sequence/COV/int_sites_tbls.comp) (last accessed 24 Aug 2020), and, reading the present specification, will appreciate that mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein can be characterized for there ability to induce sera in vaccinated subject that display neutralizing activity with respect to any or all of such variants and/or combinations thereof.
  • mRNA compositions encoding RBD of a SARS-CoV-2 spike protein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity across a panel (e.g., at least 10, at least 15, or more) of SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including RBD variants (e.g., but not limited to Q321L, V341I, A348T, N354D, S359N, V367F, K378R, R408I, Q409E, A435S, N439K, K458R, 1472V, G476S, S477N, V483A, Y508H, H519P, etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1) and spike protein variants (e.g., but not limited to D614G, as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • RBD variants e.g., but not limited to Q321L, V341I, A348T, N354D, S3
  • mRNA compositions encoding a SARS-CoV-2 spike protein variant that includes two consecutive proline substitutions at amino acid positions 986 and 987, at the top of the central helix in the S2 subunit are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity across a panel (e.g., at least 10, at least 15, or more) of SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including RBD variants (e.g., but not limited to Q321L, V341I, A348T, N354D, S359N, V367F, K378R, R408I, Q409E, A435S, N439K, K458R, 1472V, G476S, S477N, V483A, Y508H, H519P, etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1) and spike protein variants (e.g., but not limited to D614G, as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • RBD variants
  • the mRNA composition encoding SEQ ID NO: 7 (S P2) elicits an immune response against any one of a SARs-CoV-2 spike variant including RBD variants (e.g., but not limited to Q321L, V341I, A348T, N354D, S359N, V367F, K378R, R408I, Q409E, A435S, N439K, K458R, 1472V, G476S, S477N, V483A, Y508H, H519P, etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1) and spike protein variants (e.g., but not limited to D614G, as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • RBD variants e.g., but not limited to Q321L, V341I, A348T, N354D, S359N, V367F, K378R, R408I, Q409E, A435S
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at position 501 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1. In some embodiments, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a N501Y mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • Said one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at position 501 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 or said one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a N501Y mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, E484K, A701V, L18F, R246I, K417N, L242/A243/L244 deletion etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • SEQ ID NO: 1 e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "Variant of Concern 202012/01" (VOC-202012/01; also known as lineage B.1.1.7).
  • the variant had previously been named the first Variant Under Investigation in December 2020 (VUI - 202012/01) by Public Health England, but was reclassified to a Variant of Concern (VOC-202012/01).
  • VOC-202012/01 is a variant of SARS-CoV-2 which was first detected in October 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic in the United Kingdom from a sample taken the previous month, and it quickly began to spread by mid-December.
  • VOC-202012/01 variant is defined by 23 mutations: 13 non-synonymous mutations, 4 deletions, and 6 synonymous mutations (i.e., there are 17 mutations that change proteins and six that do not).
  • the spike protein changes in VOC 202012/01 include deletion 69-70, deletion 144, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, and D1118H.
  • N501Y a change from asparagine (N) to tyrosine (Y) at amino-acid site 501.
  • This mutation alone or in combination with the deletion at positions 69/70 in the N terminal domain (NTD) may enhance the transmissibility of the virus.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: deletion 69-70, deletion 144, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, and D1118H as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "501.V2".
  • This variant was first observed in samples from October 2020, and since then more than 300 cases with the 501.V2 variant have been confirmed by whole genome sequencing (WGS) in South Africa, where in December 2020 it was the dominant form of the virus. Preliminary results indicate that this variant may have an increased transmissibility.
  • the 501.V2 variant is defined by multiple spike protein changes including: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y and A701V, and more recently collected viruses have additional changes: L18F, R246I, K417N, and deletion 242-244.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y and A701V as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, K417N, and deletion 242-244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • Said SARs-CoV-2 spike variant may also include a D614G mutation as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a H69/V70 deletion in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a H69/V70 deletion in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to Y144 deletion, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, E484K, A701V, L18F, R246I, K417N, L242/A243/L244 deletion, Y453F, I692V, S1147L, M 1229I etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1),
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "Variant of Concern 202012/01" (VOC-202012/01; also known as lineage B.1.1.7).
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: deletion 69-70, deletion 144, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, and D1118H as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "Cluster 5", also referred to as ⁇ FVI-spike by the Danish State Serum Institute (SSI). It was discovered in North Jutland, Denmark, and is believed to have been spread from minks to humans via mink farms. In cluster 5, several different mutations in the spike protein of the virus have been confirmed.
  • SSI Danish State Serum Institute
  • the specific mutations include 69-70deltaHV (a deletion of the histidine and valine residues at the 69th and 70th position in the protein), Y453F (a change from tyrosine to phenylalanine at position 453), 1692V (isoleucine to valine at position 692), M1229I (methionine to isoleucine at position 1229), and optionally S1147L (serine to leucine at position 1147).
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: deletion 69-70, Y453F, 1692V, M1229I, and optionally S1147L, as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at position 614 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1. In some embodiments, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a D614G mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at position 614 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 or said one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a D614G mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, N501Y, A570D, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, E484K, A701V, L18F, R246I, K417N, L242/A243/L244 deletion, Y453F, 1692V, S1147L, M1229I etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • SEQ ID NO: 1 e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, N501Y, A570D, P
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "Variant of Concern 202012/01" (VOC-202012/01; also known as lineage B.1.1.7).
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: deletion 69-70, deletion 144, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, and D1118H as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y, A701V, and D614G as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, K417N, and deletion 242- 244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at positions 501 and 614 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1. In some embodiments, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a N501Y mutation and a D614G mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at positions 501 and 614 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 or said one or more SARs- CoV-2 spike variants including a N501Y mutation and a D614G mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, A570D, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, E484K, A701V, L18F, R246I, K417N, L242/A243/L244 deletion, Y453F, 1692V, S1147L, M1229I etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • SEQ ID NO: 1 e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, A570D
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "Variant of Concern 202012/01" (VOC-202012/01; also known as lineage B.1.1.7).
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: deletion 69-70, deletion 144, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, and D1118H as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y, A701V, and D614G as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, K417N, and deletion 242- 244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at position 484 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1. In some embodiments, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a E484K mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at position 484 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 or said one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a E484K mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, A701V, L18F, R246I, K417N, L242/A243/L244 deletion, Y453F, 1692V, S1147L, M1229I, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, H655Y, T1027I, V1176F etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO:
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "501.V2".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y, and A701V, as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, K417N, and deletion 242-244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • Said SARs-CoV-2 spike variant may also include a D614G mutation as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • Lineage B.1.1.248 known as the Brazil(ian) variant, is one of the variants of SARS-CoV-2 which has been named P.l lineage and has 17 unique amino acid changes, 10 of which in its spike protein, including N501Y and E484K.
  • B.1.1.248 originated from B.1.1.28.
  • E484K is present in both B.1.1.28 and B.1.1.248.
  • B.1.1.248 has a number of S-protein polymorphisms [L18F, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, E484K, N501Y, H655Y, T1027I, V1176F] and is similar in certain key RBD positions (K417, E484, N501) to variant described from South Africa.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "B.1.1.28".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "B.1.1.248".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: L18F, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, E484K, N501Y, H655Y, T1027I, and V1176F as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at positions 501 and 484 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1. In some embodiments, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a N501Y mutation and a E484K mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at positions 501 and 484 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 or said one or more SARs- CoV-2 spike variants including a N501Y mutation and a E484K mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, A701V, L18F, R246I, K417N, L242/A243/L244 deletion, Y453F, 1692V, S1147L, M1229I, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, H655Y, T1027I, V1176F etc., as compared to
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "501.V2".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y and A701V as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, K417N, and deletion 242-244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • Said SARs-CoV-2 spike variant may also include a D614G mutation as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "B.1.1.248".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: L18F, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, E484K, N501Y, H655Y, T1027I, and V1176F as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at positions 501, 484 and 614 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1. In some embodiments, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a N501Y mutation, a E484K mutation and a D614G mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at positions 501, 484 and 614 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 or said one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a N501Y mutation, a E484K mutation and a D614G mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, A570D, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, A701V, L18F, R246I, K417N, L242/A243/L244 deletion, Y453F, 1692V, S1147L, M1229I, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, H655Y, T1027I, V1176F etc
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y, A701V, and D614G as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, K417N, and deletion 242- 244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a L242/A243/L244 deletion in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a L242/A243/L244 deletion in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, E484K, A701V, L18F, R246I, K417N, Y453F, 1692V, S1147L, M 1229I, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, H655Y, T1027I, V1176F etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • SEQ ID NO: 1 e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, N501Y, A570D, D6
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "501.V2".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y, A701V and deletion 242-244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, and K417N, as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • Said SARs-CoV-2 spike variant may also include a D614G mutation as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at position 417 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1. In some embodiments, mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a K417N or K417T mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at position 417 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 or said one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a K417N or K417T mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, N501Y, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, E484K, A701V, L18F, R246I, L242/A243/L244 deletion, Y453F, 1692V, S1147L, M1229I, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, H655Y, T1027I, V1176F etc., as compared to SEQ ID NO:
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "501.V2".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y, A701V and K417N,, as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, and deletion 242-244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • Said SARs-CoV-2 spike variant may also include a D614G mutation as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "B.1.1.248".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: L18F, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, E484K, N501Y, H655Y, T1027I, and V1176F as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at positions 417 and 484 and/or 501 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a K417N or K417T mutation and a E484K and/or N501Y mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a mutation at positions 417 and 484 and/or 501 in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 or said one or more SARs-CoV-2 spike variants including a K417N or K417T mutation and a E484K and/or N501Y mutation in spike protein as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 may include one or more further mutations as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1 (e.g., but not limited to H69/V70 deletion, Y144 deletion, A570D, D614G, P681H, T716I, S982A, D1118H, D80A, D215G, A701V, L18F, R246I, L242/A243/L244 deletion, Y453F, I692V, S1147L, M1229I, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, H655Y, T1027I, V1176
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "501.V2".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: D80A, D215G, E484K, N501Y, A701V and K417N, as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1, and optionally: L18F, R246I, and deletion 242-244 as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • Said SARs-CoV-2 spike variant may also include a D614G mutation as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant "B.1.1.248".
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein are characterized in that sera of vaccinated subjects display neutralizing activity against SARs-CoV- 2 spike variant including the following mutations: L18F, T20N, P26S, D138Y, R190S, K417T, E484K, N501Y, H655Y, T1027I, and V1176F as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • the SARs-CoV-2 spike variants described herein may or may not include a D614G mutation as compared to SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • mRNA compositions and/or methods described herein can provide protection against SARS-CoV-2 and/or decrease severity of SARS-CoV-2 infection in at least 50% of subjects receiving such mRNA compositions and/or methods.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include subjects of age 18-55. In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include subjects of age 56-85. In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include older subjects (e.g., over age 60, 65, 70, 75, 80, 85, etc, for example subjects of age 65-85). In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include subjects of age 18-85. In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include subjects of age 18 or younger. In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include subjects of age 12 or younger.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include subjects of age 10 or younger. In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include adolescent populations (e.g., individuals approximately 12 to approximately 17 years of age). In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include infants (e.g., less than 1 year old). In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein do not include infants (e.g., less than 1 year) whose mothers have received such mRNA compositions described herein during pregnancy.
  • a rat study as shown in Example 31 has suggested that a SARS-CoV- 2 neutralizing antibody response induced in female rats given such mRNA compositions during pregnancy can pass onto fetuses.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein include infants (e.g., less than 1 year) whose mothers did not receive such mRNA compositions described herein during pregnancy.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include pregnant women; in some embodiments, infants whose mothers were vaccinated during pregnancy (e.g., who received at least one dose, or alternatively only who received both doses), are not vaccinated during the first weeks, months, or even years (e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 weeks or more, or 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 moths or more, or 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 years or more) post-birth.
  • infants whose mothers were vaccinated during pregnancy e.g., who received at least one dose, or alternatively only who received both doses
  • are not vaccinated during the first weeks, months, or even years e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 weeks or more, or 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 moths or more, or 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 years or more post-birth.
  • infants whose whose mothers were vaccinated during pregnancy receive reduced vaccination (e.g., lower doses and/or smaller numbers of administrations - e.g., boosters - and/or lower total exposure over a given period of time) after birth, for example during the first weeks, months, or even years (e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 weeks or more, or 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 months or more, or 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 years or more) post-birthor may need reduced vaccination (e.g., lower doses and/or smaller numbers of administrations - e.g., boosters - over a given period of time),
  • compositions as provided herein are administered to populations that do not include pregnant women.
  • compositions as provided herein are administered to pregnant women according to a regimen that includes a first dose administered after about 24 weeks of gestation (e.g., after about 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28 or more weeks of gestation); in some embodiments, compositions as provided herein are administered to pregnant women according to a regimen that includes a first dose administered before about 34 weeks of gestation (e.g., before about 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38 weeks of gestation).
  • compositions as provided herein are administered to pregnant women according to a regimen that includes a first dose administered after about 24 weeks (e.g., after about 27 weeks of gestation, e.g., between about 24 weeks and 34 weeks, or between about 27 weeks and 34 weeks) of gestation and a second dose administered about 21 days later; in some embodiments both doses are administered prior to delivery.
  • such a regimen e.g., involving administration of a first dose after about 24 weeks, or 27 weeks of gestation and optionally before about 34 weeks of gestation
  • a second dose within about 21 days, ideally before delivery may have certain advantages in terms of safety (e.g., reduced risk of premature delivery or of fetal morbidity or mortality) and/or efficacy (e.g., carryover vaccination imparted to the infant) relative to alternative dosing regimens (e.g., dosing at any time during pregnancy, refraining from dosing during pregnancy, and/or dosing later in pregnancy for example so that only one dose is administered during gestation.
  • safety e.g., reduced risk of premature delivery or of fetal morbidity or mortality
  • efficacy e.g., carryover vaccination imparted to the infant
  • alternative dosing regimens e.g., dosing at any time during pregnancy, refraining from dosing during pregnancy, and/or dosing later in pregnancy for example so that only one dose is administered
  • infants born of mothers vaccinated during pregnancy may not need further vaccination, or may need reduced vaccination (e.g., lower doses and/or smaller numbers of administrations - e.g., boosters -, and/or lower overall exposure over a given period of time), for a period of time (e.g., as noted herein) after birth.
  • reduced vaccination e.g., lower doses and/or smaller numbers of administrations - e.g., boosters -, and/or lower overall exposure over a given period of time
  • compositions as provided herein are administered to populations in which women are advised against becoming pregnant for a period of time after receipt of the vaccine (e.g., after receipt of a first dose of the vaccine, after receipt of a final dose of the vaccine, etc.); in some such embodiments, the period of time may be at least 1 week, at least 2 weeks, at least 3 weeks, at least 4 weeks, at least 5 weeks, at least 6 weeks, at least 7 weeks, at least 8 weeks, at least 9 weeks, at least 10 weeks or more, or may be at least 1 month, at least 2 months, at least 3 months, at least 4 months, at least 5 months, at least 6 months, or more.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include one or more populations with one or more particularly high risk conditions or history, e.g., as noted herein.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include subjects whose profession and/or environmental exposure may dramatically increase their risk of getting SARS-CoV-2 infection (including, e.g., but not limited to mass transportation, prisoners, grocery store workers, residents in long-term care facilities, butchers or other meat processing workers, healthcare workers, and/or first responders, e.g., emergency responders).
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include healthcare workers and/or first responders, e.g., emergency responders.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include those with a history of smoking or vaping (e.g., within 6 months, 12 months or more, including a history of chronic smoking or vaping). In some embodiments, populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include certain ethnic groups that have been determined to be more susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 infection.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include certain populations with a blood type that may have been determined to more susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 infection.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include immunocompromised subjects (e.g., those with HIV/AIDS; cancer and transplant patients who are taking certain immunosuppressive drugs; autoimmune diseases or other physiological conditions expected to warrant immunosuppressive therapy (e.g., within 3 months, within 6 months, or more); and those with inherited diseases that affect the immune system (e.g., congenital agammaglobulinemia, congenital IgA deficiency)).
  • immunocompromised subjects e.g., those with HIV/AIDS; cancer and transplant patients who are taking certain immunosuppressive drugs; autoimmune diseases or other physiological conditions expected to warrant immunosuppressive therapy (e.g., within 3 months, within 6 months, or more); and those with inherited diseases that affect the immune system (e.g., congenital agammaglobulinemia,
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include those with an infectious disease.
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include those infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and/or a hepatitis virus (e.g., HBV, HCV).
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include those with underlying medical conditions.
  • Examples of such underlying medical conditions may include, but are not limited to hypertension, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, e.g., chronic pulmonary disease, asthma, etc., cancer, and other chronic diseases such as, e.g., lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, chonic liver diseases, chronic kidney diseases (e.g., Stage 3 or worse such as in some embodiments as characterized by a glomerular filtration rate (GFR) of less than 60 mL/min/1.73m 2 ).
  • GFR glomerular filtration rate
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include overweight or obese subjects, e.g., specifically including those with a body mass index (BMI) above about 30 kg/m 2 .
  • BMI body mass index
  • populations to be treated with mRNA compositions described herein may include subjects who have prior diagnosis of COVID-19 or evidence of current or prior SARS-CoV-2 infection, e.g., based on serology or nasal swab.
  • populations to be treated include white and/or non-Hispanic/non-Latino.
  • certain mRNA compositions described herein may be selected for administration to Asian populations (e.g., Chinese populations), or in particular embodiments to older Asian populations (e.g, 60 years old or over, e.g., 60-85 or 65-85 years old).
  • Asian populations e.g., Chinese populations
  • older Asian populations e.g., 60 years old or over, e.g., 60-85 or 65-85 years old.
  • an mRNA composition as provided herein is administered to and/or assessed in subject(s) who have been determined not to show evidence of prior infection, and/or of present infection, before administration; in some embodiments, evidence of prior infection and/or of present infection, may be or include evidence of intact virus, or any viral nucleic acid, protein, lipid etc. present in the subject (e.g., in a biological sample thereof, such as blood, cells, mucus, and/or tissue), and/or evidence of a subject's immune response to the same.
  • an mRNA composition as provided herein is administered to and/or assessed in subject(s) who have been determined to show evidence of prior infection, and/or of present infection, before administration; in some embodiments, evidence of prior infection and/or of present infection, may be or include evidence of intact virus, or any viral nucleic acid, protein, lipid etc. present in the subject (e.g., in a biological sample thereof, such as blood, cells, mucus, and/or tissue), and/or evidence of a subject's immune response to the same. In some embodiments, a subject is considered to have a prior infection based on having a positive N-binding antibody test result or positive nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) result on the day of Dose 1.
  • NAAT positive nucleic acid amplification test
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is administered to a subject who has been informed of a risk of side effects that may include one or more of, for example: chills, fever, headache, injection site pain, muscle pain, tiredness; in some embodiments, an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is administered to a subject who has been invited to notify a healthcare provider if one or more such side effects occurs, is experienced as more than mild or moderate, persists for a period of more than a day or a few days, or if any serious or unexpected event is experienced that the subject reasonably considers may be associated with receipt of the composition.
  • a risk of side effects may include one or more of, for example: chills, fever, headache, injection site pain, muscle pain, tiredness
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is administered to a subject who has been invited to notify a healthcare provider if one or more such side effects occurs, is experienced as more than mild or moderate, persists for a period of more than
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is administered to a subject who has been invited to notify a healthcare provider of particular medical conditions which may include, for example, one or more of allergies, bleeding disorder or taking a blood thinner medication, breastfeeding, fever, immunocompromised state or taking medication that affects the immune system, pregnancy or plan to become pregnant, etc.
  • a healthcare provider of particular medical conditions which may include, for example, one or more of allergies, bleeding disorder or taking a blood thinner medication, breastfeeding, fever, immunocompromised state or taking medication that affects the immune system, pregnancy or plan to become pregnant, etc.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is administered to a subject who has been invited to notify a healthcare provider of having received another COVID-19 vaccine.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is administered to a subject not having one of the following medical conditions: experiencing febrile illness, receiving immunosuppressant therapy, receiving anticoagulant therapy, suffering from a bleeding disorder (e.g., one that would contraindicate intramuscular injection), or pregnancy and/or breatfeeding/lactation.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is administered to a subject not having received another COVID-19 vaccine.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is administered to a subject who has not had an allergic reaction to any component of the RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is administered to a subject who received a first dose and did not have an allergic reaction (e.g., as described herein) to the first dose.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein may be administered one or more interventions such as treatment to manage and/or reduce symptom(s) of such allergic reactions, for example, fever-reducing and/or anti-inflammatory agents.
  • a subject who has received at least one dose of an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is informed of avoiding being exposed to a coronavirus (e.g., SARS-CoV-2) unless and until several days (e.g., at least 7 days, at least 8 days, 9 days, at least 10 days, at least 11 days, at least 12 days, at least 13 days, at least 14 days, etc.) have passed since administration of a second dose.
  • a coronavirus e.g., SARS-CoV-2
  • several days e.g., at least 7 days, at least 8 days, 9 days, at least 10 days, at least 11 days, at least 12 days, at least 13 days, at least 14 days, etc.
  • RNA e.g., mRNA
  • a subject who has received at at least one dose of an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein is informed of taking precautionary measures against SARS-CoV-2 infection (e.g., remaining socially distant, wearing masks, frequent hand-washing, etc.) unless and until several days (e.g., at least 7 days, at least 8 days, 9 days, at least 10 days, at least 11 days, at least 12 days, at least 13 days, at least 14 days, etc.) have passed since administration of a second dose.
  • precautionary measures against SARS-CoV-2 infection e.g., remaining socially distant, wearing masks, frequent hand-washing, etc.
  • several days e.g., at least 7 days, at least 8 days, 9 days, at least 10 days, at least 11 days, at least 12 days, at least 13 days, at least 14 days, etc.
  • methods of administering an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein comprise administering a second dose of such an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as provided herein to a subject who received a first dose and took precautionary measures to avoid being exposed to a coronavirus (e.g., SARS-CoV-2).
  • a coronavirus e.g., SARS-CoV-2
  • mRNA compositions described herein may be delivered to a draining lymph node of a subject in need thereof, for example, for vaccine priming. In some embodiments, such delivery may be performed by intramuscular administration of a provided mRNA composition.
  • different particular mRNA compositions may be administered to different subject population(s); alternatively or additionally, in some embodiments, different dosing regimens may be administered to different subject populations.
  • mRNA compositions administered to particular subject population(s) may be characterized by one or more particular effects (e.g., incidence and/or degree of effect) in those subject populations.
  • such effect(s) may be or comprise, for example titer and/or persistence of neutralizing antibodies and/or T cells (e.g., T H 1-type T cells such as CD4 + and/or CD8 + T cells), protection against challenge (e.g., via injection and/or nasal exposure, etc), incidence, severity, and/or persistence of side effects (e.g., reactogenicity), etc.
  • T H 1-type T cells such as CD4 + and/or CD8 + T cells
  • protection against challenge e.g., via injection and/or nasal exposure, etc
  • incidence, severity, and/or persistence of side effects e.g., reactogenicity
  • one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be administered according to a regimen established to reduce COVID-19 incidence per 1000 person-years, e.g., based on a laboratory test such as nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT).
  • one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be administered according to a regimen established to reduce COVID-19 incidence per 1000 person-years based on a laboratory test such as nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) in subjects receiving at least one dose of a provided mRNA composition with no serological or virological evidence (e.g., up to 7 days after receipt of the last dose) of past SARS-CoV-2 infection.
  • NAAT nucleic acid amplification test
  • one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be administered according to a regimen established to reduce confirmed severe COVID-19 incidence per 1000 person-years. In some embodiments, one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be administered according to a regimen established to reduce confirmed severe COVID-19 incidence per 1000 person-years in subjects receiving at least one dose of a provided mRNA composition with no serological or virological evidence of past SARS- CoV-2 infection.
  • one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be administered according to a regimen established to produce neutralizing antibodies directed to a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) as measured in serum from a subject that achieves or exceeds a reference level (e.g., a reference level determined based on human SARS-CoV-2 infection/COVID-19 convalescent sera) for a period of time and/or induction of cell-mediated immune response (e.g., a T cell response against SARS-CoV-2), including, e.g., in some embodiments induction of T cells that recognize at least one or more MHC-restricted (e.g., MHC class l-restricted) eptiopes within a SARS-CoV- 2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) for a period of time.
  • a reference level e.g., a reference level determined based on
  • the period of time may be at least 2 months, 3 months, at least 4 months, at least 5 months, at least 6 months, at least 7 months, at least 8 months, at least 9 months, at least 10 months, at least 11 months, at least 12 months or longer.
  • one or more epitopes recognized by vaccine-induced T cells may be presented on a MHC class I allele that is present in at least 50% of subjects in a population, including, e.g., at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90%, or more; in some such embodiments, the MHC class I allele may be HLA-B*0702, HLA-A*2402, HLA- B*3501, HLA-B*4401, or HLA-A*0201.
  • an epitope may comprise HLA- A*0201 YLQPRTFLL; HLA-A*0201 RLQSLQTYV; HLA-A*2402 QYIKWPWYI; HLA-A*2402 NYNYLYRLF; HLA-A*2402 KWPWYIWLGF; HLA-B*3501 QPTESIVRF; HLA-B*3501 IPFAMQMAY; or HLA-B*3501 LPFNDGVYF.
  • efficacy is assessed as COVID-19 incidence per 1000 person-years in individuals without serological or virological ecidence of past SARS-CoV-2 infection before and during vaccination regimen; alternatively or additionally, in some embodiments, efficacy is assessed as COVID-19 incidence per 1000 person-years in subjects with and without evidence of past SARS-CoV-2 infection before and during vaccination regimen.
  • such incidence is of COVID-19 cases confirmed within a specific time period after the final vaccination dose (e.g., a first dose in a single-dose regimen; a second dose in a two-dose regimen, etc); in some embodiments, such time period may be within (i.e., up to and including 7 days) a particular number of days (e.g., 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 days or more). In some embodiments, such time period may be within 7 days or within 14 days or within 21 days or within 28 days. In some embodiments, such time period may be within 7 days. In some embodiments, such time period may be within 14 days.
  • a subject is determined to have experienced COVID-19 infection if one or more of the following is established: detection of SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid in a sample from the subject, detection of antibodies that specifically recognize SARS-CoV-2 (e.g., a SARS-Co-V-2 spike protein), one or more symptoms of COVID-19 infection, and combinations thereof.
  • detection of SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid may involve, for example, NAAT testing on a mid-turbinatae swap sample.
  • detection of relevant antibodies may involve serological testing of a blood sample or portion thereof.
  • symptoms of COVID-19 infection may be or include: fever, new or increased cough, new or increased shortness of breath, chills, new or increased muscle pain, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, diarrhea, vomiting and combinations thereof.
  • symptoms of COVID-19 infection may be or include: fever, new or increased cough, new or increased shortness of breath, chills, new or increased muscle pain, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, diarrhea, vomiting, fatigue, headache, nasal congestion or runny nose, nausea, and combinations thereof.
  • a subject is determined to have experienced COVID-19 infection if such subject both has experienced one such symptom and also has received a positive test for SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid or antibodies, or both.
  • a subject is determined to have experienced COVID-19 infection if such subject both has experienced one such symptom and also has received a positive test for SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid. In some such embodiments, a subject is determined to have experienced COVID-19 infection if such subject both has experienced one such symptom and also has received a positive test for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies.
  • a subject is determined to have experienced severe COVID-19 infection if such subject has experienced one or more of: clinical signs at rest indicative or severe systemic illness (e.g., one or more of respiratory rate at greater than or equal to 30 breaths per minute, heart rate at or above 125 beats per minute, SpO 2 less than or equal to 93% on room air at sea level or a PaO 2 /FiO 2 below 300 m Hg), respiratory failure (e.g., one or more of needing high-flow oxygen, noninvasive ventilation, mechanical ventilation, ECMO), evidence of shock (systolic blood pressure below 90 mm Hg, diastolic blood pressure below 60mm Hg, requiring vasopressors), significant acute renal, hepatic, or neurologic dystfunction, admission ot an intensive care unit, death, and combinations thereof.
  • clinical signs at rest indicative or severe systemic illness e.g., one or more of respiratory rate at greater than or equal to 30 breaths per minute, heart rate at or above 125 beats per minute,
  • one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be administered according to a regimen established to reduce the percentage of subjects reporting at least one of the following: (i) one or more local reactions (e.g., as described herein) for up to 7 days following each dose; (ii) one or more systemic events for up to 7 days following each dose; (iii) adverse events (e.g., as described herein) from a first dose to 1 month after the last dose; and/or (iv) serious adverse events (e.g., as described herein) from a first dose to 6 months after the last dose.
  • one or more local reactions e.g., as described herein
  • one or more systemic events for up to 7 days following each dose
  • adverse events e.g., as described herein
  • serious adverse events e.g., as described herein
  • RNA e.g., mRNA
  • one or more subjects who have received an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein may be monitored (e.g., for a period of at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 days or more, including, for example, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 weeks or more, including for example 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 ,10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 months or more, including for example 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 years or more) to assess, for example, presence of an immune response to component(s) of the administered composition, evidence of exposure to and/or immune response to SARS-CoV-2 or another coronavirus, evidence of any adverse event, etc.
  • monitoring may be via tele-visit.
  • monitoring may be in- person.
  • a treatment effect conferred by one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be characterized by (i) a SARS-CoV-2 anti-S1 binding antibody level above a pre-determined threshold; (ii) a SARS-CoV-2 anti-RBD binding antibody level above a pre-determined threshold; and/or (iii) a SARS-CoV-2 serum neutralizing titer above a threshold level, e.g., at baseline, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, 12 months, 18 months, and/or 24 months after completion of vaccination.
  • anti-S1 binding antibody and/or anti-RBD binding antibody levels and/or serum neutralizing titers may be characterized by geometric mean concentration (GMC), geometric mean titer (GMT), or geometric mean fold-rise (GMFR).
  • a treatment effect conferred by one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be characterized in that percentage of treated subjects showing a SARS- CoV-2 serum neutralizing titer above a pre-determined threshold, e.g., at baseline, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, 12 months, 18 months, and/or 24 months after completion of vaccination, is higher than the percentage of non-treated subjects showing a SARS-CoV-2 serum neutralizing titer above such a pre-determined threshold (e.g., as described herein).
  • a serum neutralizing titer may be characterized by geometric mean concentration (GMC), geometric mean titer (GMT), or geometric mean fold-rise (GMFR).
  • a treatment effect conferred by one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be characterized by detection of SARS-CoV-2 NVA-specific binding antibody.
  • a treatment effect conferred by one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be characterized by SARS-CoV-2 detection by nucleic acid amplification test.
  • a treatment effect conferred by one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be characterized by induction of cell-mediated immune response (e.g., a T cell response against SARS-CoV-2), including, e.g., in some embodiments induction of T cells that recognize at least one or more MHC-restricted (e.g., MHC class l-restricted) eptiopes within a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD).
  • cell-mediated immune response e.g., a T cell response against SARS-CoV-2
  • MHC-restricted e.g., MHC class l-restricted
  • RBD immunogenic fragment thereof
  • one or more epitopes recognized by vaccine-induced T cells may be presented on a MHC class I allele that is present in at least 50% of subjects in a population, including, e.g., at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90%, or more; in some such embodiments, the MHC class I allele may be HLA-B*0702, HLA-A*2402, HLA- B*3501, HLA-B*4401, or HLA-A*0201.
  • an epitope may comprise HLA- A*0201 YLQPRTFLL; HLA-A*0201 RLQSLQTYV; HLA-A*2402 QYIKWPWYI; HLA-A*2402 NYNYLYRLF; HLA-A*2402 KWPWYIWLGF; HLA-B*3501 QPTESIVRF; HLA-B*3501 IPFAMQMAY; or HLA-B*3501 LPFNDGVYF.
  • Primary VE1 represents VE for prophylactic mRNA compositions described herein against confirmed COVID-19 in participants without evidence of infection before vaccination
  • primary VE2 represents VE for prophylactic mRNA compositions described herein against confirmed COVID-19 in all participants after vaccination.
  • primary VE1 and VE2 can be evaluated sequentially to control the overall type I error of 2.5% (hierarchical testing).
  • RNA e.g., mRNA
  • secondary VE endpoints e.g., confirmed severe COVID-19 in participants without evidence of infection before vaccination and confirmed severe COVID-19 in all participants
  • evaluation of primary and/or secondary VE endpoints may be based on at least 20,000 or more subjects (e.g., at least 25,000 or more subjects) randomized in a 1:1 ratio to the vaccine or placebo group, e.g., based on the following assumptions: (i) 1.0% illness rate per year in the placebo group, and (ii) 20% of the participants being non-evaluable or having serological evidence of prior infection with SARS-CoV-2, potentially making them immune to further infection.
  • one or more mRNA compositions described herein may be administered according to a regimen established to achieve maintenance and/or continued enhancement of an immune response.
  • an administration regimen may include a first dose optionally followed by one or more subsequent doses; in some embodiments, need for, timing of, and/or magnitude of any such subsequent dose(s) may be selected to maintain, enhance, and/or modify one or more immune responses or features thereof.
  • number, timing, and/or amount(s) of dose(s) have been established to be effective when administered to a relevant population.
  • number, timing and/or amount(s) of dose(s) may be adjusted for an individual subject; for example, in some embodiments, one or more features of an immune response in an individual subject may be assessed at least once (and optionally more than once, for example multiple times, typically spaced apart, often at pre-selected intervals) after receipt of a first dose. For example, presence of antibodies, B cells, and/or T cells (e.g., CD4 + and/or CD8 + T cells), and/or of cytokines secreted thereby and/or identity of and/or extent of responses to particular antigen(s) and/or epitope(s) may be assessed. In some embodiments, need for, timing of, and/or amount of a subsequent dose may be determined in light of such assessments.
  • RNA e.g., mRNA
  • one or more subjects who have received an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein may be monitored (e.g., for a period of at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 days or more, including, for example, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 weeks or more, including for example 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 ,10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 months or more, including for example 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 years or more) from receipt of any particular dose to assess, for example, presence of an immune response to component(s) of the administered composition, evidence of exposure to and/or immune response to SARS-CoV-2 or another coronavirus, evidence of any adverse event, etc, including to perform assessment of one or more of presence of antibodies, B cells, and/or T cells (e.g., CD4 + and/or CD8 + T cells), and/or of cytokines secreted thereby and/or identity
  • Administration of a composition as described herein may be in accordance with a regimen that includes one or more such monitoring steps. For example, in some embodiments, need for, timing of, and/or amount of a second dose relative to a first dose (and/or of a subsequent dose relative to a prior dose) is assessed, determined, and/or selected such that administration of such second (or subsequent) dose achieves amplification or modification of an immune response (e.g., as described herein) observed after the first (or other prior) dose.
  • an immune response e.g., as described herein
  • such amplification of an immune response may be at least 30%, at least 40%, at least 50%, at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90%, at least 95%, or higher, as compared to the level of an immune response observed after the first dose.
  • such amplification of an immune response may be at least 1.5 fold, at least 2-fold, at least 3-fold, at least 4-fold, at least 5-fold, at least 6-fold, at least 7-fold, at least 8-fold, at least 9-fold, at least 10-fold, at least 20-fold, at least 30-fold, or higher, as compared to the level of an immune response observed after the first dose.
  • need for, timing of, and/or amount of a second (or subsequent) dose relative to a first (or other prior) dose is assessed, determined, and/or selected such that administration of the later dose extends the durability of an immune response (e.g., as described herein) observed after the earlier dose; in some such embodiments, the durability may be extended by at least 1 week, at least 2 weeks, at least 3 weeks, at least 1 month, at least 2 months, at least 3 months, at least 4 months, at least 5 months, at least 6 months, at least 7 months, at least 8 months, at least 9 months, or longer.
  • an immune response observed after the first dose may be characterized by production of neutralizing antibodies directed to a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) as measured in serum from a subject and/or induction of cell- mediated immune response (e.g., a T cell response against SARS-CoV-2), including, e.g., in some embodiments induction of T cells that recognize at least one or more MHC-restricted (e.g., MHC class l-restricted) eptiopes within a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD).
  • MHC-restricted e.g., MHC class l-restricted
  • one or more epitopes recognized by vaccine-induced T cells may be presented on a MHC class I allele that is present in at least 50% of subjects in a population, including, e.g., at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90%, or more; in some such embodiments, the MHC class I allele may be HLA-B*0702, HLA-A*2402, HLA-B*3501, HLA-B*4401, or HLA-A*0201.
  • an epitope may comprise HLA-A*0201 YLQPRTFLL; HLA-A*0201 RLQSLQTYV; HLA-A*2402 QYIKWPWYI; HLA-A*2402 NYNYLYRLF; HLA-A*2402 KWPWYIWLGF; HLA-B*3501 QPTESIVRF; HLA-B*3501 IPFAMQMAY; or HLA-B*3501 LPFNDGVYF.
  • need for, timing of, and/or amount of a second dose relative to a first dose (or other subsequent dose relative to a prior dose) is assessed, determined and/or selected such that administration of such second (or subsequent) dose maintains or exceeds a reference level of an immune response; in some such embodiments, the reference level is determined based on human SARS-CoV-2 infection/COVID-19 convalescent sera and/ro PBMC samples drawn from subjects (e.g., at least a period of time such as at least 14 days or longer, including, e.g., 15 days, 16 days, 17 days, 18 days, 19 days, 20 days, 25 days, 30 days, 35 days, 40 days, 45 days, 50 days, 55 days, 60 days, or longer, after PCR-confirmed diagnosis when the subjects were asymptomatic.
  • an immune response may be characterized by production of neutralizing antibodies directed to a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) as measured in serum from a subject and/or induction of cell-mediated immune response (e.g., a T cell response against SARS-CoV-2), including, e.g., in some embodiments induction of T cells that recognize at least one or more MHC-restricted (e.g., MHC class l-restricted) eptiopes within a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD).
  • MHC-restricted e.g., MHC class l-restricted
  • one or more epitopes recognized by vaccine-induced T cells may be presented on a MHC class I allele that is present in at least 50% of subjects in a population, including, e.g., at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90%, or more; in some such embodiments, the MHC class I allele may be HLA-B*0702, HLA-A*2402, HLA-B*3501, HLA-B*4401, or HLA- A*0201.
  • an epitope may comprise HLA-A*0201 YLQPRTFLL; HLA- A*0201 RLQSLQTYV; HLA-A*2402 QYIKWPWYI; HLA-A*2402 NYNYLYRLF; HLA-A*2402 KWPWYIWLGF; HLA-B*3501 QPTESIVRF; HLA-B*3501 IPFAMQMAY; or HLA-B*3501 LPFNDGVYF.
  • determination of need for, timing of, and/or amount of a second (or subsequent) dose may include one or more steps of assessing, after (e.g., 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 days or longer after) a first (or other prior) dose, presence and/or expression levels of neutralizing antibodies directed to a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD) as measured in serum from a subject and/or induction of cell-mediated immune response (e.g., a T cell response against SARS-CoV- 2), including, e.g., in some embodiments induction of T cells that recognize at least one or more MHC-restricted (e.g., MHC class l-restricted) eptiopes within a SARS-CoV-2 spike polypeptide and/or an immunogenic fragment thereof (e.g., RBD).
  • MHC-restricted e.g., MHC class l-re
  • one or more epitopes recognized by vaccine-induced T cells may be presented on a MHC class I allele that is present in at least 50% of subjects in a population, including, e.g., at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90%, or more; in some such embodiments, the MHC class I allele may be HLA-B*0702, HLA-A*2402, HLA-B*3501, HLA-B*4401, or HLA- A*0201.
  • an epitope may comprise FILA-A*0201 YLQPRTFLL; HLA- A*0201 RLQSLQTYV; HLA-A*2402 QYIKWPWYI; HLA-A*2402 NYNYLYRLF; HLA-A*2402 KWPWYIWLGF; HLA-B*3501 QPTESIVRF; HLA-B*3501 IPFAMQMAY; or HLA-B*3501 LPFNDGVYF.
  • kits as provided herein may comprise a real-time monitoring logging device, which, for example in some embodiments, is capable of providing shipment temperatures, shipment time and/or location.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein may be shipped, stored, and/or utilized, in a container (such as a vial or syringe), e.g., a glass container (such as a glass vial or syringe), which, in some embodiments, may be a single-dose container or a multi-dose container (e.g., may be arranged and constructed to hold, and/or in some embodiments may hold, a single dose, or multiple doses of a product for administration).
  • a container such as a vial or syringe
  • a glass container such as a glass vial or syringe
  • a multi-dose container e.g., may be arranged and constructed to hold, and/or in some embodiments may hold, a single dose, or multiple doses of a product for administration.
  • a multi-dose container (such as a multi-dose vial or syringe) may be arranged and constructed to hold, and/or may hold 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 or more doses; in some particular embodiments, it may be designed to hold and/or may hold 5 doses.
  • a single-dose or multi-dose container (such as a single-dose or multi-dose vial or syringe) may be arranged and constructed to hold and/or may hold a volume or amount greater than the indicated number of doses, e.g., in order to permit some loss in transfer and/or administration.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein may be shipped, stored, and/or utilized, in a preservative-free glass container (e.g., a preservative-free glass vial or syringe, e.g., a single-dose or multi-dose preservative-free glass vial or syringe).
  • a preservative-free glass container e.g., a preservative-free glass vial or syringe, e.g., a single-dose or multi-dose preservative-free glass vial or syringe.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein may be shipped, stored, and/or utilized, in a preservative-free glass container (e.g., a preservative-free glass vial or syringe, e.g., a single-dose or multi-dose preservative-free glass vial or syringe) that contains 0.45 ml of frozen liquid (e.g., including 5 doses).
  • a preservative-free glass container e.g., a preservative-free glass vial or syringe, e.g., a single-dose or multi-dose preservative-free glass vial or syringe
  • 0.45 ml of frozen liquid e.g., including 5 doses.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein and/or a container (e.g., a vial or syringe) in which it is disposed, is shipped, stored, and/or utilized may be maintained at a temperature below room temperature, at or below 4 °C, at or below 0 °C, at or below -20 °C, at or below -60 °C, at or below -70 °C, at or below -80 °C , at or below -90 °C, etc.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein and/or a container (e.g., a viral or syringe) in which it is disposed, is shipped, stored, and/or utilized may be maintained at a temperature between -80°C and -60°C and in some embodiments protected from light.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein and/or a container (e.g., a viral or syringe) in which it is disposed, is shipped, stored, and/or utilized may be maintained at a temperature below about 25°C, and in some embodiments protected from light.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein and/or a container (e.g., a viral or syringe) in which it is disposed, is shipped, stored, and/or utilized may be maintained at a temperature below about 5°C (e.g., below about 4°C), and in some embodiments protected from light.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein and/or a container (e.g., a viral or syringe) in which it is disposed, is shipped, stored, and/or utilized may be maintained at a temperature below about -20°C, and in some embodiments protected from light.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein and/or a container (e.g., a viral or syringe) in which it is disposed, is shipped, stored, and/or utilized may be maintained at a temperature above about -60°C (e.g., in some embodiments at or above about -20°C, and in some embodiments at or above about 4-5°C, in either case optionally below about 25°C), and in some embodiments protected from light, or otherwise without affirmative steps (e.g., cooling measures) taken to achieve a storage temperature materially below about -20°C.
  • a temperature above about -60°C e.g., in some embodiments at or above about -20°C, and in some embodiments at or above about 4-5°C, in either case optionally below about 25°C
  • affirmative steps e.g., cooling measures
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein and/or a container (e.g., a vial or syringe) in which it is disposed is shipped, stored, and/or utilized together with and/or in the context of a thermally protective material or container and/or of a temperature adjusting material.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein and/or a container (e.g., a vial or syringe) in which it is disposed is shipped, stored, and/or utilized together with ice and/or dry ice and/or with an insulating material.
  • a container e.g., a vial or syringe in which an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is disposed is positioned in a tray or other retaining device and is further contacted with (or otherwise in the presence of) temperature adjusting (e.g., ice and/or dry ice) material and/or insulating material.
  • temperature adjusting e.g., ice and/or dry ice
  • multiple containers e.g., multiple vials or syringes such as single use or multi-use vials or syringes as described herein
  • a provided RNA e.g., mRNA
  • co- localized e.g., in a common tray, rack, box, etc.
  • temperature adjusting e.g., ice and/or dry ice
  • multiple containers e.g., multiple vials or syringes such as single use or multi-use vials or syringes as described herein
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition in which an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is disposed are positioned in a common tray or rack, and multiple such trays or racks are stacked in a carton that is surrounded by a temperature adjusting material (e.g., dry ice) in a thermal (e.g., insulated) shipper.
  • a temperature adjusting material e.g., dry ice
  • temperature adjusting material is replenished periodically (e.g., within 24 hours of arrival at a site, and/or every 2 hours, 4 hours, 6 hours, 8 hours, 10 hours, 12 hours, 14 hours, 16 hours, 18 hours, 20 hours, 22 hours, 1 day, 2 days, 3 days, 4 days, 5 days, 6 days, 7 days, 8 days, 9 days, 10 days, etc.).
  • re-entry into a thermal shipper should be infrequent, and desirably should not occur more than twice a day.
  • a thermal shipper is re-closed within 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 minute, or less, of having been opened.
  • RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition that has been stored within a thermal shipper for a period of time, optionally within a particular temperature range remains useful.
  • a thermal shipper as described herein containing a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is or has been maintained (e.g., stored) at a temperature within a range of about 15 °C to about 25 °C
  • the RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition may be used for up to 10 days; that is, in some embodiments, a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition that has been maintained within a thermal shipper, which thermal shipper is at a temperature within a range of about 15 °C to about 25 °C, for a period of not more than 10 days is administered to a subject.
  • RNA e.g., mRNA
  • a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is or has been maintained (e.g., stored) within a thermal shipper, which thermal shipper has been maintained (e.g., stored) at a temperature within a range of about 15 °C to about 25 °C, it may be used for up to 10 days; that is, in some embodiments, a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition that has been maintained within a thermal shipper, which thermal shipper has been maintained at a temperature within a range of about 15 °C to about 25 °C for a period of not more than 10 days is administered to a subject.
  • a provided RNA e.g., mRNA
  • a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is shipped and/or stored in a frozen state.
  • a provided RNA e.g., mRNA composition is shipped and/or stored as a frozen suspension, which in some embodiments does not contain preservative.
  • a frozen RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is thawed.
  • a thawed RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition e.g., a suspension
  • a thawed RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition may be used for up to a small number (e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6) of days after thawing if maintained (e.g., stored) at a temperature at or below room temperature (e.g., below about 30 °C, 25 °C, 20 °C, 15 °C, 10 °C, 8 °C, 4 °C, etc).
  • a small number e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6
  • room temperature e.g., below about 30 °C, 25 °C, 20 °C, 15 °C, 10 °C, 8 °C, 4 °C, etc.
  • a thawed RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition may be used after being stored (e.g., for such small number of days) at a temperature between about 2 °C and about 8 °C; alternatively or additionally, a thawed RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition may be used within a small number (e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) of hours after thawing at room temperature.
  • a thawed RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition may be used after being stored (e.g., for such small number of days) at a temperature between about 2 °C and about 8 °C; alternatively or additionally, a thawed RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition may be used within a small number (e.g., 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) of hours after thawing at room temperature.
  • a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition that has been thawed and maintained at a temperature at or below room temperature, and in some embodiments between about 2 °C and about 8 °C, for not more than 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 days is administered to a subject.
  • a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition that has been thawed and maintained at room temperature for not more than 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 hours is administered to a subject.
  • a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is shipped and/or stored in a concentrated state. In some embodiments, such a concentrated composition is diluted prior to administration.
  • a diluted composition is administered within a period of about 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 hour(s) post-dilution; in some embodiments, such administration is within 6 hours post-dilution.
  • diluted preparation of a provided RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is administered to a subject within 6 hours post-dilution (e.g., as described herein after having been maintained at an appropriate temperature, e.g., at a temperature below room temperature, at or below 4 °C, at or below 0 °C, at or below -20 °C, at or below -60 °C, at or below -70 °C, at or below - 80 °C, etc, and typically at or above about 2 °C, for example between about 2 °C and about 8 °C or between about 2 °C and about 25 °C).
  • unusued composition is discarded within several hours (e.g., about 10, about 9, about 8, about 7, about 6, about 5 or fewer hours) after dilution; in some embodiments, unused composition is discarded within 6 hours of dilution.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition that is stored, shipped or utilized may have been maintained at a temperature materially above -60°C for a period of time of at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 days or more, or at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 weeks or more, or at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 months or more; in some such embodiments, such composition may have been maintained at a temperature at or above about -20°C for such period of time, and/or at a temperature up to or about 4-5°C for such period of time, and/or may have been maintained at a temperature above about 4-5°C, and optionally about 25°C for a period of time up that is less than two (2) months and/or optionally up to about one (1) month.
  • a temperature materially above -60°C for a period of time of at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 days or more, or at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 weeks or more, or at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8,
  • such composition may not have been stored, shipped or utilized (or otherwise exposed to) a temperature materially above about 4-5°C, and in particular not at or near a temperature of about 25°C for a period of time as long as about 2 weeks, or in some embodiments 1 week.
  • such composition may not have been stored, shipped or utilized (or otherwise exposed to) a temperature materially above about -20°C, and in particular not at or near a temperature of about 4-5°C for a period of time as long as about 12 months, 11 months, 10 months, 9 months, 8 months, 7 months, 6 months, 5 months, 4 months, 3 months, 2 months, or, in some embodiments, for a period of time as long as about 8 weeks or 6 weeks or materially more than about 2 months or, in some embodiments, 3 months or, in some embodiments 4 months.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition that is stored, shipped or utilized may be protected from light.
  • one or more steps may be taken to reduce or minimize exposure to light for such compositions (e.g., which may be disposed within a container such as a vial or a syringe).
  • exposure to direct sunlight and/or to ultraviolent light is avoided.
  • a diluted solution may be handled and/or utilized under normal room light conditions (e.g., without particular steps taken to minimize or reduce exposure to room light).
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein is not administered (e.g., is not injected) intravenously.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein is not administered (e.g., is not injected) intradermally.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein is not administered (e.g., is not injected) subcutaneously.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein is not administered (e.g., is not injected) any of intravenously, intradermally, or subcutaneously.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein is not administered to a subject with a known hypersensitivity to any ingredient thereof.
  • a subject to whom an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition has been administered is monitored for one or more signs of anaphylaxis.
  • a subject to whom an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is administered had previously received at least one dose of a different vaccine for SARS-CoV-2; in some embodiments, a subject to whom an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition is administered had not previously received a different vaccine for SARS-CoV-2.
  • a subject's temperature is taken promptly prior to administration of an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition (e.g., shortly before or after thawing, dilution, and/or administration of such composition); in some embodiments, if such subject is determined to be febrile, administration is delayed or canceled.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein is not administered to a subject who is receiving anticoagulant therapy or is suffering from or susceptible to a bleeding disorder or condition that would contraindicate intramuscular injection.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein is administered by a healthcare professional who has communicated with the subject receiving the composition information relating to side effects and risks.
  • an RNA (e.g., mRNA) composition as described herein is administered by a healthcare professional who has agreed to submit an adverse event report for any serious adverse events, which may include for example one or more of death, development of a disability or congenital anomaly/birth defect (e.g., in a child of the subject), in-patient hospitalization (including prolongation of an existing hospitalization), a life-threatening event, a medical or surgical intervention to prevent death, a persistent or significant or substantial disruption of the ability to conduct normal life functions; or another important medical event that may jeopardize the individual and may require medical or surgical intervention (treatment) to prevent one of the other outcomes.
  • a healthcare professional who has agreed to submit an adverse event report for any serious adverse events, which may include for example one or more of death, development of a disability or congenital anomaly/birth defect (e.g., in a child of the subject), in-patient hospitalization (including prolongation of an existing hospitalization), a life-threatening event, a medical or surgical intervention to prevent death, a
  • provided RNA compositions are administered to a population of individuals under 18 years of age, or under 17 years of age, or under 16 years of age, or under 15 years of age, or under 14 years of age, or under 13 years of age, for example according to a regimen established to have a rate of incidence for one or more of the local reaction events indicated below that does not exceed the rate of incidence indicated below:
  • provided RNA compositions are administered to a population of individuals under 18 years of age, or under 17 years of age, or under 16 years of age, or under 15 years of age, or under 14 years of age, or under 13 years of age, for example according to a regimen established to have a rate of incidence for one or more of the systemic reaction events indicated below that does not exceed the rate of incidence indicated below:
  • medication that alleviates one or more symptoms of one or more local reaction and/or systemic reaction events are administered to individuals under 18 years of age, or under 17 years of age, or under 16 years of age, or under 15 years of age, or under 14 years of age, or under 13 years of age who have been administered with provided RNA compositions and have experienced one or more of the local and/or systemic reaction events (e.g., described herein).
  • antipyretic and/or pain medication can be administered to such individuals.
  • the present disclosure provides a kit and/or container system comprising: a) a primary container; b) a payload container; c) at least one tray for placement within the payload container, wherein the at least one tray contains a temperature-sensitive material; and d) a dry ice container; wherein the at least one tray has dimensions A x B x H, where A is about 228 to about 233 mm, B is about 228 to about 233 mm, and H is about 38 to about 46 mm.
  • the A dimension can be about 228 mm, 229 mm, 230 mm, 231 mm, 232 mm, or about 233 mm;
  • the B dimension can be about 228 mm, 229 mm, 230 mm, 231 mm, 232 mm, or about 233 mm;
  • the H dimension can be about 38 mm, 39 mm, 40 mm, 41 mm, 42 mm, 43 mm, 44 mm, 45 mm, or about 46 mm.
  • the payload container in such a kit can have dimensions such as 229 ⁇ 10 mm x 229 ⁇ 10 mm x 229 ⁇ 10 mm.
  • the primary container (or thermal shipper) can have internal dimensions of about 200mm to about 300mm X about 200mm to about 300mm X about 200mm to about 300mm; and external dimensions of about 300 mm to about 500 mm X about 300mm to about 500mm X about 350mm to about 700mm.
  • the primary container can have internal dimensions of A x B x C, wherein A and B are each independently about 200mm, 220mm, 230mm, 240mm, 245 mm, 255mm, 260mm, 265mm, 270mm, 280mm, 290mm, or about 300mm; and wherein C is independently about 200mm, 220mm, 230mm, 235 mm, 237mm, 238 mm, 239 mm, 240mm, 241mm, 242mm, 243 mm, 244mm, 245 mm, 255mm, 260mm, 265mm, 270mm, 280mm, 290mm, or about 300mm.
  • the primary container can have external dimensions of A x B x C, wherein A and B are each independently about 300mm, 320mm, 340mm, 360mm, 380mm, 390mm, 395mm, 400mm, 405mm, 410mm, 420mm, 440mm, 460mm, 480mm or about 500mm; and wherein C is independently about 350mm, 370mm, 390mm, 410mm, 430mm, 450mm, 470mm, 490mm, 510mm, 520mm, 530mm, 540mm, 550mm, 555mm, 560mm, 565mm, 570mm, 575mm, 580mm, 600mm, 620mm, 640mm, 660mm, 680mm, or about 700 mm.
  • a and B are each independently about 300mm, 320mm, 340mm, 360mm, 380mm, 390mm, 395mm, 400mm, 405mm, 410mm, 420mm, 440mm, 460mm, 480mm or about 500mm
  • kits and/or container systems disclosed herein are capable of maintaining the temperature of the material within the tray, and/or the interior of the payload container, at -10°C or lower, -20°C or lower, -30°C or lower, -40°C or lower, -50°C or lower, -60°C or lower, -70°C or lower, -80°C or lower, or -90°C or lower for at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, or at least 10 days.
  • the kits and/or container systems can further comprise a temperature monitoring system.
  • the temperature monitoring system can comprise a temperature sensor and a display, wherein the temperature monitoring system displays or warns when the temperature of the material, or the temperature of a specific region within the container system attains a temperature greater than a specific threshold temperature.
  • a specific threshold temperature can be about -10°C, -20°C, -30°C, -40°C, -50°C, -60°C, -70°C, -80°C, or about -90°C.
  • kits and/or container systems disclosed herein can have the payload container placed at the bottom of the primary container, and further wherein the dry ice container is placed on top (or on bottom) of the payload container.
  • kits and/or container systems disclosed herein can have the at least one tray placed inside the payload container.
  • the at least one tray placed inside the payload container can be 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, or more trays within the payload container.
  • the temperature-sensitive material can be contained within at least one glass vial, wherein the at least one glass vial is placed within the tray.
  • the temperature-sensitive material can also be contained within a specimen tube, a bag, or a syringe.
  • Such vials, syringes, tubes, and/or bags can be single-dose, or multi-dose.
  • the trays described herein can each contain any number of vials, such as 10, 15, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100, 125, 150, 175, 185, 195, 200 or more.
  • a method of transporting a temperature-sensitive material comprising the steps of: a) placing the material in a kit or container system according as disclosed herein; and b) transporting the kit or container system to an intended destination.
  • the temperature inside the payload container and/or its location is continuously monitored throughout the duration of the transportation.
  • the transportation is carried out on land, air, and/or water.
  • the transportation is carried out via land vehicle (such as delivery truck or van), airplane (or other modes of air transportation such as drone or helicopter), and/or boat.
  • the temperature inside the payload container is maintained at -10°C or lower, -20°C or lower, -30°C or lower, -40°C or lower, -50°C or lower, -60°C or lower, -70°C or lower, -80°C or lower, or -90°C or lower throughout the duration of the transportation.
  • the location of the kit or container system is periodically or continuously monitored through use of a global positioning system (GPS).
  • GPS global positioning system
  • a payload container having dimensions A x B x C, wherein each of the A, B, and C dimensions can independently be about 225 mm, 226 mm, 227 mm, 228 mm, 229 mm, 230 mm, 231 mm or about 232 mm. Further, for example, at least 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, or at least 10 trays are placed within the payload container, wherein each tray contains at least 50, 75, 100, 125, 150, 160, 170, 180, 185, 190, 195, or at least 200 vials of temperature-sensitive material.
  • a tray for carrying temperature-sensitive material wherein the tray has dimensions A x B x H, wherein: A is about 227 mm, 228 mm, 229 mm, 230 mm,
  • B is about 227 mm, 228 mm, 229 mm, 230 mm, 231 mm,
  • a tray contains at least 50, 75, 100, 125, 150, 160, 170, 180, 185, 190, 195, or at least 200 vials of temperature-sensitive material.
  • the tray is made of polypropylene (e.g. Akylux ® , Biplex ® , or equivalent thereof).
  • the kit and/or container system of the present disclosure can be used to store a temperature-sensitive material for up to 10 days if stored at 15°C to 25°C without opening.
  • the temperature-sensitive material can be stored for 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, or 10 days under such conditions.
  • after the primary container is opened it can be replenished with dry ice within 24 hours. For example, replenishment can occur within 1 hour, within 2 hours, within 4 hours, within 8 hours, within 12 hours, within 16 hours, within 20 hours, or within 24 hours of being opened following transportation.
  • the amount of dry ice used to replenish the kit or container system can be up to 1 kg, 5kg, 10kg, 15 kg, 20 kg, 21kg, 22 kg, 22 kg, 23 kg, 24 kg, 25 kg or up to 30 kg. Dry ice that can be used includes various sizes, such as 1mm pellets up to 20 mm pellets.
  • the kit or container system can be re-iced, for example, every 1 day, every 2 days, every 3 days, every 4 days, every 5 days, every 6 days, every 7 days, every 8 days, every 9 days, or every 10 days.
  • the kit or container system is opened not more than once per day, or not more than twice per day.
  • the kit or container system can be closed within 1 minute (or less), within 2 minutes (or less), within 3 minutes (or less), within 4 minutes (or less), or within 5 minutes (or less) after opening.
  • the temperature-sensitive material can be stored at about 2°C to about 8°C up to 2 days or at room temperature for no more than 1 hours, or no more than 2 hours after thawing.
  • FIG. 1 Schematic overview of the S protein organization of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein.
  • the sequence within the S1 subunit consists of the signal sequence (SS) and the receptor binding domain (RBD) which is the key subunit within the S protein which is relevant for binding to the human cellular receptor ACE2.
  • the S2 subunit contains the S2 protease cleavage site (S2') followed by a fusion peptide (FP) for membrane fusion, heptad repeats (HR1 and HR2) with a central helix (CH) domain, the transmembrane domain (TM) and a cytoplasmic tail (CT).
  • Figure 2 Anticipated constructs for the development of a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.
  • Figure 3 Antibody immune response against Influenza HA using the LNP-formulated modRNA.
  • mice were immunized twice with 1 ⁇ g of the vaccine candidate.
  • Total amount of viral antigen specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) was measured via ELISA.
  • the functionality of the antibodies was assessed via VNT.
  • FIG. 4 T cell response against Influenza HA using the LNP-formulated modRNA platform.
  • BALB/c mice were immunized IM with 1 ⁇ g of the vaccine candidate, twice.
  • the T cell response was analyzed using antigen specific peptides for T cell stimulation recovered from the spleen. IFN ⁇ release was measured after peptide stimulation using an ELISpot assay.
  • FIG. 5 Anti-S protein IgG response 7, 14, 21 and 28 d after immunization with BNT162a1.
  • BALB/c mice were immunized IM once with 1, 5 or 10 ⁇ g of LNP-formulated RBL063.3. On day
  • mice were immunized IM once with 0.2, 1 or 5 ⁇ g of LNP-formulated RBP020.3. On day
  • Figure 7 Neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus 14, 21 and 28 d after immunization with BNT162b1.
  • Figure 8 Anti-S protein IgG response 7, 14 and 21 d after immunization with BNT162c1.
  • mice were immunized IM once with 0.2, 1 or 5 ⁇ g of LNP-formulated RBS004.3.
  • animals were bled and the serum samples were analyzed for total amount of anti-S1 (left) and anti-RBD (right) antigen specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) measured via ELISA.
  • IgG immunoglobulin G
  • day 7 (1:100)
  • day 14 (1:300)
  • day 21 (1:900) different serum dilution were included in the graph.
  • FIG 10 Anti-S protein IgG response 7, 14, 21 and 28 d after immunization with LNP- formulated RBL063.1.
  • BALB/c mice were immunized IM once with 1, 5 or 10 ⁇ g of LNP-formulated RBL063.1.
  • animals were bled and the serum samples were analyzed for total amount of anti-S1 (left) and anti-RBD (right) antigen specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) measured via ELISA.
  • IgG antigen specific immunoglobulin G
  • Figure 11 Neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus 14, 21 and 28 d after immunization with LNP-formulated RBL063.1.
  • Figure 12 Anti-S protein IgG response 7, 14 and 21 d after immunization with BNT162b2 (LNP-formulated RBP020.1).
  • mice were immunized IM once with 0.2, 1 or 5 ⁇ g of LNP-formulatedRBP020.1.
  • animals were bled and the serum samples were analyzed for total amount of anti-S1 (left) and anti-RBD (right) antigen specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) measured via ELISA.
  • IgG immunoglobulin G
  • day 7 (1:100)
  • day 14 (1:300)
  • day 21 (1:1100
  • Figure 13 Neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus 14 and 21 after immunization with BNT162b2 (LNP-formulated RBP020.1).
  • Figure 14 Anti-S protein IgG response 7, 14 and 21 d after immunization with LNP- formulated RBS004.2.
  • mice were immunized IM once with 0.2, 1 or 5 ⁇ g of LNP-formulated RBS004.2.
  • animals were bled and the serum samples were analyzed for total amount of anti-S1 (left) and anti-RBD (right) antigen specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) measured via ELISA.
  • IgG immunoglobulin G
  • day 7 (1:100)
  • day 14 (1:300)
  • day 21 (1:900) different serum dilution were included in the graph.
  • FIG. 15 Neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus 14 and 21 after immunization with LNP-formulated RBS004.2.
  • mice were immunized IM once with 0.2, 1 or 5 ⁇ g of LNP-formulated RBS004.2. On 14, and 21 d after immunization, animals were bled, and the sera were tested for SARS CoV-2 pseudovirus neutralization.
  • Figure 16 ALC-0315 activity in the screening process.
  • FIG. 17 Luciferase expression was monitored on the right (site of injection), dorsal (site of injection) and ventral (drainage to the liver) sides of the animal after intramuscular administration in wild-type (WT) or ApoE knockout C57BI/6 mice in the presence or absence of ApoE3. Luciferase expression was detected using Xenolight D-Luciferin Rediject at 4, 24, 72 and 96 hours post administration.
  • FIG. 18 Luciferase activity after intravenous (IV) and intramuscular (IM) administration in wild-type (WT) or ApoE knockout C57BI/6 mice in the presence (KO+) or absence (KO) of ApoE3. Luciferase expression was detected using Xenolight D-Luciferin Rediject at 4 hours post administration.
  • RNA vaccines with 5'-cap, 5'- and 3'- untranslated regions, coding sequences with intrinsic secretory signal peptide as well as GS- linker, and poly(A)-tail. Please note that the individual elements are not drawn exactly true to scale compared to their respective sequence lengths.
  • UTR Untranslated region
  • sec Secretory signal peptide
  • RBD Receptor Binding Domain
  • GS Glycine-serine linker.
  • Figure 20 General structure of the RNA. Schematic illustration of the general structure of the RNA drug substances with 5'-cap, 5'- and 3'-untranslated regions, coding sequences with intrinsic secretory signal peptide as well as GS- linker, and poly(A)-tail. Please note that the individual elements are not drawn exactly true to scale compared to their respective sequence lengths.
  • GS Glycine-serine linker
  • UTR Untranslated region
  • Sec Secretory signal peptide
  • RBD Receptor Binding Domain.
  • RNA vaccines with 5'-cap, 5'- and 3'- untranslated regions, coding sequences of the Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEEV) RNA-dependent RNA polymerase replicase and the SARS-CoV-2 antigen with intrinsic secretory signal peptide as well as GS-linker, and poly(A)-tail.
  • VEEV Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus
  • GS-linker Glycine-serine linker.
  • Figure 22 ELISpot analysis 28 d after immunization with BNT162b1.
  • Figure 23 Cytokine concentrations in supernatants of re-stimulated splenocytes 12 d after immunization with BNT162b1.
  • FIG. 24 T cell immunophenotyping in PBMCs 7 days after immunization with BNT162b1.
  • FIG. 25 B cell immunophenotyping in draining lymph nodes 12 days after immunization with BNT162b1.
  • mice were immunized IM once with 5 ⁇ g of LNP-formulated RBP020.3. On day 12 after immunization, mice were euthanized. Flow cytometry analysis of lymphocytes was performed of B cells. Activated B cells were gated within single, viable lymphocytes and defined as IgD- Dump (CD4, CD8, F4/80, GR-1)- cells. Plasma cells were defined as CD138 + B220 low/- cells.
  • Switched B cells were gated from non-plasma cells and defined as CD19 + CD138-IgM- .
  • Terminal center (GC) B cells were gated from switched B cells and defined as CD19 + lgM CD38-CD95 + cells and gated for IgG1 and lgG2a.
  • Figure 26 ELISpot analysis 28 d after immunization with LNP-formulated modRNA RBP020.1.
  • Figure 27 Cytokine concentrations in supernatants of re-stimulated splenocytes 28 d after immunization with LNP-formulated modRNA RBP020.1.
  • FIG. 28 ELISpot analysis 28 d after immunization with LNP-formulated saRNA RBS004.2.
  • BALB/c mice were immunized IM once with 5 ⁇ g of LNP-formulated RBS004.2.
  • mice were euthanized and splenocytes were prepared.
  • ELISpot assay was performed using MACS-sorted CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. T cells were stimulated with an S protein-specific overlapping peptide pool and IFN- ⁇ secretion was measured to assess T-cell responses.
  • Figure 29 Cytokine concentrations in supernatants of re-stimulated splenocytes 28 d after immunization with LNP-formulated saRNA RBS004.2.
  • Figure 30 Schematic overview of the S protein organization of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein and novel constructs for the development of a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.
  • construct (1) starts with the SARS-CoV-2-S signal peptide (SP; AA 1-19 of the S protein) whereas construct (2) starts with the human Ig heavy chain signal peptide (huSec) to ensure Golgi transport to the cell membrane.
  • SP SARS-CoV-2-S signal peptide
  • huSec human Ig heavy chain signal peptide
  • Figure 31 Anti-S protein IgG response 6, 14 and 21 d after immunization with LNP-C12 formulated modRNA coding for transmembrane-anchored RBD-based vaccine constructs.
  • mice were immunized IM once with 4 ⁇ g of LNP-C12-formulated transmembrane- anchored RBD-based vaccine constructs (surrogate to BNT162b3c/BNT162b3d).
  • animals were bled and the serum samples were analyzed for total amount of anti-S1 (left) and anti-RBD (right) antigen specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) measured via ELISA.
  • IgG immunoglobulin G
  • Figure 32 Neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus 6, 14 and 21 d after immunization with LNP-C12 formulated modRNA coding for transmembrane-anchored RBD-based vaccine constructs.
  • mice were immunized IM once with 4 ⁇ g of LNP-C12-formulated transmembrane- anchored RBD-based vaccine constructs (surrogate to BNT162b3c/BNT162b3d).
  • animals were bled and the sera were tested for SARS CoV-2 pseudovirus neutralization.
  • LLOQ lower limit of quantification.
  • ULOQ upper limit of quantification.
  • Figure 33 Immunogenicity of BNT162b1 in rhesus macaques and comparison to human convalescent sera.
  • Rhesus macaques were immunized IM on days 0 and 21 with 30 ⁇ g or 100 ⁇ g of BNT162b1 or with placebo (0.9% NaCI). Sera were obtained before immunization and 14, 21, 28, and 35 days after immunization; PBMCs were obtained before and 14 and 42 days after immunization.
  • P values were determined by a two-tailed one-way ANOVA and Dunnett’s multiple comparisons test, c, Flow cytometry analysis of CD4 + T cells producing IFN- ⁇ , IL-2, TNF (T H 1), IL-21 or IL-4 (T H 2) cytokines in the rhesus macaque PBMCs on day 42. P values were determined by a two-tailed Kruskal-Wallis test followed by Dunn's multiple comparisons test. Each data point corresponds to an individual animal.
  • Figure 36 a: Systemic Events Reported within 7 days after Vaccination 1: All Dose Levels; b: Systemic Events Reported within 7 days after Vaccination 2: 10 ⁇ g & 30 ⁇ g Dose Levels
  • BNT162 induced T cells IFN ⁇ ELISpot ex vivo, ⁇ T cell responses in 8 of 8 tested subjects.
  • Sera were obtained on day 1 (Pre prime) and on day 8, 22 (pre boost), 29 and 43.
  • Pre-dose responses across all dose levels were combined.
  • HCS Human COVID-19 convalescent sera
  • LLOQ 1.15
  • LLOQ/2 values were plotted.
  • Arrowheads indicate vaccination. Chequered bars indicate that no boost immunisation was performed. Values above bars are geometric means with 95% confidence intervals.
  • day 43 data were pending for five subjects of the 50 ⁇ g cohort and all subjects of the 60 ⁇ g cohort.
  • VNT 50 SARS-CoV-250% neutralisation titers
  • HCS COVID-19 convalescent patients
  • LLOQ lower limit of quantification
  • Arrowheads indicate days of immunisation. Chequered bars indicate that no boost immunisation was performed. Geometric mean (values above bars) with 95% confidence interval.
  • the vaccination schedule is as in Figure 39.
  • Common pathogen T-cell epitope pools CEF (CMV, EBV, influenza virus HLA class I epitopes) and CEFT (CMV, EBV, influenza virus, tetanus toxoid HLA class II epitopes) served to assess general T-cell reactivity, medium served as negative control.
  • Nonparametric Spearman correlation are the number of subjects with detectable CD4 + or CD8 + T cell response within the total number of tested subjects per dose cohort.
  • PBMCs of vaccinees and COVID-19 recovered donors were stimulated over night with an overlapping peptide pool representing the vaccine-encoded RBD and analysed by flow cytometry (a-c) and bead-based immunoassay (d).
  • a Exemplary pseudocolor flow cytometry plots of cytokine- producing CD4 + and CD8 + T cells of a 10- ⁇ g cohort subject
  • b RBD-specific CD4 + T cells producing the indicated cytokine as fraction of total cytokine-producing RBD-specific CD4 + T cells
  • c RBD-specific CD8 + (left) or CD4 + (right) T cells producing the indicated cytokine as fraction of total circulating T cells of the same subset.
  • Flow cytometry gating strategy for identification of IFN ⁇ , IL-2 and IL-4 secreting T cells in study subject PBMC samples a, CD4 + and CD8 + T cells were gated within single, viable lymphocytes, b, c, Gating of IFN ⁇ , IL-2 and IL-4 in CD4 + T cells (b), and IFN ⁇ and IL-2 in CD8 + T cells (c).
  • Splenocytes of BALB/c mice immunized IM with BNT162b2 or buffer were ex vivo restimulated with full-length S peptide mix or negative controls (irrelevant peptide in a, right); no peptide in (a, left) and in (c)). P-values were determined by a two-tailed paired t-test.
  • (a) IFN ⁇ ELISpot of splenocytes collected 12 days after immunization of mice (n 8 per group) with 5 ⁇ g BNT162b2 (left).
  • Figure 61 IFN ⁇ ELISpot data for 5 subjects vaccinated with 10 ⁇ g BNT162b2
  • T-cell responses were compared to effectors incubated with medium only as negative control using an ELISpot data analysis Tool (EDA), based on two statistical tests (distribution free resampling) according to Moodie et al. (Moodie Z.
  • EDA ELISpot data analysis Tool
  • FIG. 62 Example of CD4+ and CD8+ IFN ⁇ ELISpot data IFN ⁇ ELISpot was performed as in Fig. 61 using PBMCs obtained from a subject prior to immunization and on day 29 after dose 1 of 10 ⁇ g BNT162b2 (7 days post dose 2). HLA class I and class II peptide pools CEF (cytomegalovirus [CMV], Epstein Barr virus [EBV] (7 days post dose 2), and influenza virus, HLA class I epitope mix) and CEFT (CMV, EBV, influenza virus, and tetanus toxoid HLA class II cell epitope mix) were used as benchmarking controls to assess CD8+ and CD4+ T cell reactivity.
  • CEF cytomegalovirus [CMV]
  • EBV Epstein Barr virus
  • CEFT CEFT
  • Figure 63 Comparison of BNT162b2-elicited and benchmark INFy ELISpot responses IFN ⁇ spot counts from day 29 (7 day post dose 2) PBMC samples obtained from 5 subjects who were immunized with 10 ⁇ g of BNT162b2 on days 1 and 22. CEF (CMV, EBV, and influenza virus HLA class I epitope mix), and CEFT (CMV, EBV, influenza virus, and tetanus toxoid HLA class II cell epitope mix) were used as benchmarking controls to assess CD8+ and CD4+ T cell reactivity. Horizontal lines indicate median values.
  • Figure 64 Design and characterisation of the immunogen a, Structure of BNT162b1. Linear diagram of RNA (left), and cartoon of LNP (right). UTR, untranslated region; SP, signal peptide, b, Representative 2D class averages from electron microscopy of negatively stained RBD-foldon trimers. Box edge: 37 nm.
  • c Density map of the ACE2/B°ATl/RBD-foldon trimer complex at 3.24 A after focused refinement of the ACE2 extracellular domain bound to an RBD monomer. Surface color-coding by subunit. A ribbon model refined to the density shows the RBD-ACE2 binding interface, with residues potentially mediating polar interactions labeled.
  • d-f Splenocytes of BALB/c mice immunised IM with BNT162b1 or buffer (control) were ex vivo re-stimulated with full-length S peptide mix or negative controls (no peptide in (d, left) and in (e, f ); irrelevant peptide in (d, right)). P-values were determined by a two-tailed paired t-test.
  • IFN ⁇ ELISpot of splenocytes collected 12 days after immunisation of mice (n 8 per group) with 5 ⁇ g BNT162b1 (left).
  • HCS Human convalescent sera
  • Figure 69 Exemplary pandemic supply product packaging overview
  • Figure 70 Exemplary vaccine storage & handling at the point of vaccination
  • FIG. 76 Geometric Mean Concentrations and 95% Cl: SARS-CoV-2 RBD-binding IgG Level Assay - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 18-55 Years of Age - BNT162b1 - Evaluable Immunogenicity Population
  • FIG. 77 Geometric Mean Concentrations and 95% Cl: SARS-CoV-2 RBD-binding IgG Level Assay - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 65-85 Years of Age, BNT162b1 - Evaluable Immunogenicity Population
  • FIG. 78 Geometric Mean Concentrations and 95% Cl: SARS-CoV-2 S1-binding IgG Level Assay - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 18-55 Years of Age - BNT162b1 - Evaluable Immunogenicity Population
  • Figure 79 Geometric Mean Concentrations and 95% Cl: SARS-CoV-2 S1-binding IgG Level Assay - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 65-85 Years of Age - BNT162b1 - Evaluable Immunogenicity Population
  • FIG. 80 Geometric Mean Concentrations and 95% Cl: SARS-CoV-2 S1-binding IgG Level Assay - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 18-55 Years of Age - BNT162b2 - Evaluable Immunogenicity Population
  • FIG. 81 Geometric Mean Concentrations and 95% Cl: SARS-CoV-2 S1-binding IgG Level Assay - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 65-85 Years of Age - BNT162b2 - Evaluable Immunogenicity Population
  • Figure 82 Geometric Mean Concentrations and 95% Cl: SARS-CoV-2 RBD-binding IgG Level Assay - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 18-55 Years of Age - BNT162b2 - Evaluable Immunogenicity Population
  • FIG. 83 Geometric Mean Concentrations and 95% Cl: SARS-CoV-2 RBD-binding IgG Level Assay - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 65-85 Years of Age - BNT162b2 - Evaluable Immunogenicity Population
  • Figure 84 Subjects Reporting Local Reactions, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 18-55 Years of Age - BNT162b1 - Safety Population
  • Figure 85 Subjects Reporting Local Reactions, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 65-85 Years of Age - BNT162b1 - Safety Population
  • Figure 86 Subjects Reporting Local Reactions, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 18-55 Years of Age - BNT162b2 - Safety Population
  • Figure 87 Subjects Reporting Local Reactions, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 65-85 Years of Age - BNT162b2 - Safety Population
  • Figure 88 Subjects Reporting Systemic Events, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 18-55 Years of Age - BNT162b1 - Safety Population
  • Figure 89 Subjects Reporting Systemic Events, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 65-85 Years of Age - BNT162b1 - Safety Population
  • Figure 90 Subjects Reporting Systemic Events, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 18-55 Years of Age - BNT162b2 - Safety Population
  • Figure 91 Subjects Reporting Systemic Events, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose - Phase 1, 2 Doses, 21 Days Apart - 65-85 Years of Age - BNT162b2 - Safety Population
  • Figure 92 Subjects Reporting Local Reactions, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose, Age Group 1855 Years - Phase 2 - Safety Population
  • Figure 94 Subjects Reporting Systemic Events, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose, Age Group 1855 Years - Phase 2 - Safety Population
  • Figure 95 Subjects Reporting Systemic Events, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose, Age Group 5685 Years - Phase 2 - Safety Population
  • Figure 96 Subjects Reporting Local Reactions, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose, Age Group 1855 Years - ⁇ 6000 Subjects for Phase 2/3 - Safety Population
  • Figure 97 Subjects Reporting Local Reactions, by Maximum Severity, Within 7 Days After Each Dose, Age Group 5685 Years - ⁇ 6000 Subjects for Phase 2/3 - Safety Population
  • HSC Human COVID-19 convalescent sera
  • SARS-CoV-2 50% neutralization titers VN 50 titers
  • LOD limit of detection
  • Arrowheads indicate baseline (pre-Dose 1, Day 1) and Dose 2 (Day 22).
  • the dotted horizontal line represents the LOD.
  • VN 50 50% SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody titers
  • HCS human COVID-19 convalescent serum.
  • VN 50 50% SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody titers.
  • FIG 103 BNT162b2 - Exemplary fold increase from baseline in functional 50% SARS- CoV-2 neutralizing antibody titers (VN 50 ).
  • Geometric means fold increase (GMFI) from baseline in VN 50 titer with 95% confidence intervals are shown for (A) younger participants (aged 18 to 55 yrs) immunized with 1, 3, 10, 20, or 30 ⁇ g BNT162b2, and (B) older participants (aged 56 to 85 yrs) immunized with 20 ⁇ g BNT162b2. Arrowheads indicate baseline (pre-Dose 1, Day 1) and Dose 2 (Day 22). The dotted horizontal line represents the threshold for seroconversion (fold increase ⁇ 4).
  • VN 50 50% SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody titers.
  • Figure 104 Exemplary frequencies of participants with SARS-CoV-2 GMT seroconversion after immuniziation with BNT162b1.
  • Seroconversion with regard to 50% SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody titers is shown for (A) younger participants (aged 18 to 55 yrs) dosed with 1, 3, 10, 20, or 30 ⁇ g BNT162b2, and (B) older participants (aged 56 to 85 yrs) dosed with 20 ⁇ g BNT162b2.
  • Seroconversion is defined as a minimum of 4-fold increase of functional antibody response as compared to baseline. Arrowheads indicate baseline (pre-Dose 1, Day 1) and Dose 2 (Day 22).
  • GMT geometric mean titer.
  • Figure 106 Exemplary fold increase from baseline in S1-binding antibody concentrations after immunization with BNT162b1.
  • Geometric means fold increase (GMFI) from baseline in S1-binding antibody concentrations with 95% confidence intervals are shown for younger participants (aged 18 to 55 yrs) immunized with 1, 10, 30, 50, or 60 ⁇ g BNT162b1. Arrowheads indicate baseline (pre-Dose 1, Day 1) and Dose 2 (Day 22). Dose 2 was not performed in the 60 ⁇ g dose group.
  • the dotted horizontal line represents the threshold for seroconversion (fold increase ⁇ 4).
  • Figure 107 Exemplary fold increase from baseline in S1-binding antibody concentration after immunization with BNT162b2.
  • Geometric means fold increase (GMFI) from baseline in S1-binding antibody concentrations with 95% confidence intervals are shown for (A) younger participants (aged 18 to 55 yrs) immunized with 1, 3, 10, 20, or 30 ⁇ g BNT162b2, and (B) older participants (aged 56 to 85 yrs) immunized with 20 ⁇ g BNT162b2.
  • Arrowheads indicate baseline (pre-Dose 1, Day 1) and Dose 2 (Day 22).
  • the dotted horizontal line represents the threshold for seroconversion (fold increase ⁇ 4).
  • Figure 108 Exemplary frequencies of participants with S1-binding IgG GMC seroconversion after immunization with BNT162b1.
  • Figure 109 Exemplary frequencies of participants with S1-binding IgG GMC seroconversion after immunization with BNT162b2.
  • Figure 110 Exemplary results of cytokine production produced from S-specific CD4 + T cells from younger participants immunized with BNT162b2.
  • PBMC Peripheral blood mononuclear cell
  • Cytokine production was calculated by summing up the fractions of all CD4 + T cells positive for either IFN ⁇ , IL-2, or IL-4, setting this sum to 100% and calculating the fraction of each specific cytokine-producing subset thereof. Two participants from the 1 ⁇ g cohort, 1 participant from the 3 ⁇ g cohort, and 1 participant from the 10 ⁇ g cohort were excluded from this analysis (frequency of total cytokine-producing CD4 + T cells ⁇ 0.03%).
  • Figure 111 Exemplary results of cytokine production produced from S-specific CD4 + T cells from older participants immunized with BNT162b2.
  • PBMC Peripheral blood mononuclear cell
  • IFN interferon
  • IL interleukin
  • older participants participants aged 56 to 85 yrs
  • S protein SARS-CoV-2 spike protein.
  • PBMCs obtained on day 1 (pre-prime) and day 29 (7 days post-boost) were enriched for CD4 + or CD8 + T cell effectors and separately stimulated over night with three overlapping peptide pools representing different portions of the wild-type sequence of SARS-CoV-2 S (N-terminal pools S pool 1 and RBD, and the C- terminal S pool 2), for assessment in direct ex vivo IFN ⁇ ELISpot.
  • Common pathogen T-cell epitope pools CEF (immune dominant HLA class I epitopes of CMV, EBV, influenza virus) and CEFT (immune dominant HLA class II epitopes CMV, EBV, influenza virus, tetanus toxoid) were used as controls.
  • Cell culture medium served as negative control. Each dot represents the normalised mean spot count from duplicate wells for one study participant, after subtraction of the medium-only control (a, c).
  • a Antigen-specific CD4 + and CD8 + T-cell responses for each dose cohort. The number of participants with a detectable T-cell response on day 29 over the total number of tested participants per dose cohort is provided.
  • FIG. 113 BNT162b2-induced S-specific CD8 + and CD4 + T cells.
  • PBMCs from vaccinated participants on day 29 (7 days post-boost) were stimulated as described above and analysed by flow cytometry (d,e). a, S-specific CD4 + and CD8 + T-cell responses for each dose cohort.
  • Data are plotted for all prime/boost vaccinated participants (dose cohorts 1, 10, 20 and 30 ⁇ g) from day 29, with data points for participants with no detectable T cell response (open circles; b,c) excluded from correlation analysis, a, Correlation of Sl-specific IgG responses with S- specific CD4 + T-cell responses, b, Correlation of S-specific CD4 + with CD8 + T-cell responses, c, Correlation of S1-specific IgG responses with S-specific CD8 + T-cell responses.
  • FIG. 115 Cytokine polarisation of BNT162b2-induced T cells.
  • PBMCs obtained on day 1 (pre-prime) and day 29 (7 days post-boost) were stimulated over night with three overlapping peptide pools representing different portions of the wild-type sequence of SARS-CoV-2 S (N-terminal pools S pool 1 [aa 1-643] and RBD [aa1- 16 fused to aa 327-528 of S], and the C-terminal S pool 2 [aa 633-1273]), and analysed by flow cytometry, a, Example of pseudocolor flow cytometry plots of cytokine-producing CD4 + and CD8 + T cells from a 30 ⁇ g dose cohort participant in response to S pool 1.
  • FIG. 116 Characterization of BNT162b2-induced T cells on the single epitope level.
  • PBMCs obtained on day 1 (pre-prime) and day 29 (7 days post-boost) of three vaccinated participants were stained with individual pMHC class I multimer cocktails and analysed for T cell epitope specificity (a) and phenotype (b; example from participant 3; YLQPRTFLL) by flow cytometry.
  • Peptide sequences above dot plots indicate pMHC class I multimer epitope specificity
  • numbers above dot plots indicate the amino acids corresponding to the epitope within S.
  • c Localization of identified MHC class l-restricted epitopes within S.
  • FIG. 117 ELISA screening analysis of exemplary cohort sera to detect antibody responses directed against the recombinant SARS-CoV-2 spike protein S1 domain.
  • ELISA was performed using serum samples collected on day 10 after two immunisations (prime/boost on days 1 and 8) with BNT162c1, or on day 17 after three administrations (prime/boost on days 1/8/15) of BNT162a1, BNT162b1, or BNT162b2 to analyse elicited antibody responses.
  • the serum samples were tested against the S1 protein.
  • Figure 118 ELISA screening analysis of exemplary cohort sera to detect antibody responses directed against the recombinant SARS-CoV-2 spike protein RBD domain.
  • ELISA was performed using serum samples collected on day 10 after two immunisations (prime/boost on days 1 and 8) with BNT162c1, or on day 17 after three administrations (prime/boost on days 1/8/15) of BNT162a1, BNT162b1, or BNT 162b2 to analyse elicited antibody responses.
  • the serum samples were tested against the RBD domain.
  • Figure 119 Pseudovirus neturalisation activity of exemplary cohort sera plotted as pVN 50 titre.
  • Serum samples were collected on day 10 (BNT162c1, saRNA) or day 17 (all other cohorts) after first immunisation of the animals and titres of virus-neutralising antibodies were determined by pseudovirus-based neutralisation test (pVNT). Individual VNT titres resulting in 50% pseudovirus neutralisation (pVN 50 ) are shown by dots; group mean values are indicated by horizontal bars ( ⁇ SEM, standard error of the mean).
  • Figure 120 The virus-neutralising antibodies and specific binding antibody responses to RBD and S1 in participants.
  • RBD receptor binding domain.
  • A GMTs of SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies.
  • B GMTs of binding antibodies to RBD measured by ELISA.
  • C GMTs of ELISA antibodies to S1. Each point represents a serum sample, and each vertical bar represents a geometric mean with 95% Cl.
  • Figure 121 T-cell response in participants before and after vaccination measured by IFN- ⁇ ELISpot.
  • IFN interferon.
  • PBMC peripheral blood mononuclear cells.
  • the S1 peptide pool covers the N- terminal half of SARS-CoV-2 spike, including RBD.
  • S2 peptide pool covers the C-terminal of SARS-CoV-2 spike, not including RBD.
  • CEF peptide pool consists of 32 MHC class I restricted viral peptides from human cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus and influenza virus.
  • Panel A shows the number of specific T cell with secretion of IFN- ⁇ at day 1, 29, and 43 in the younger participants aged 18-55 years.
  • Panel B shows the number of specific T cell with secretion of IFN- ⁇ at day 1, 29, and 43 in the older participants aged 65-85 years.
  • Figure 122 50% pseudovirus neutralization titers of 16 sera from BNT162b2 vaccine recipients against VSV-SARS-CoV-2-S pseudovirus bearing the Wuhan or lineage B.1.1.7 spike protein.
  • N 8 representative sera each from younger adults (aged 18 to 55 yrs; indicated by triangles) and older adults (aged 56 to 85 yrs; indicated by circles) drawn at day 43 (21 days after dose 2) were tested.
  • FIG 123 Schematic illustration of the production of VSV pseudoviruses bearing SARS-CoV- 2 S protein.
  • Figure 124 Titration of SARS-CoV-2 Wuhan reference strain and lineage B.1.1.7 spike- pseudotyped VSV on Vero 76 cells using GFP-infected cells as read-out.
  • FIG. 125 Scheme of the BNT162b2 vaccination and serum sampling.
  • Figure 126 Plot of the ratio of pVNT 50 between SARS-CoV-2 lineage B.1.1.7 and Wuhan reference strain spike-pseudotyped VSV. Triangles represent sera from younger adults (aged 18 to 55 yrs), and circles represent sera from older adults (aged 56 to 85 yrs). The sea were drawn on day 43 (21 days after dose 2).
  • Fig. 127 50% pseudovirus neutralization titers (pVNT50) of 12 sera from BNT162b2 vaccine recipients against VSV-SARS-CoV-2-S pseudovirus bearing the Wuhan Hu-1 reference, lineage B.1.1.298 or lineage B.1.351 spike protein.
  • N 12 sera from younger adults immunized with 30 ⁇ g BNT162b2 drawn at either day 29 or day 43 (7 or 21 days after dose 2) were tested.
  • Geometric mean titers are indicated.
  • Statistical significance of the difference between the neutralization of the Wuhan Hu-1 reference pseudovirus and either the lineage B.1.1.298 or the lineage B.1.351 pseudovirus was calculated by a Wilcoxon matched-pairs signed rank test. Two-tailed p-values are reported, ns, not significant;***, P ⁇ 0.001; LLOQ, lower limit of quantification.
  • Figure 128 50% plaque reduction neutralization titers of 20 sera from BNT162b2 vaccine recipients against N501 and Y501 SARS-CoV-2. Seven sera (indicated by triangles) were drawn 2 weeks after the second dose of vaccine; 13 sera (indicated by circles) were drawn 4 weeks after the second dose.
  • Figure 129 Diagram of the N501Y substitution.
  • L - leader sequence ORF - open reading frame; RBD - receptor binding domain; S - spike glycoprotein; S1 - N-terminal furin cleavage fragment of S; S2 - C-terminal furin cleavage fragment of S; E - envelope protein; M - membrane protein; N - nucleoprotein; UTR - untranslated region.
  • Figure 130 Plaque morphologies of N501 and Y501 SARS-CoV-2 on Vero E6 cells.
  • FIG. 131 Scheme of the BNT162 vaccination and serum sampling.
  • Figure 132 Plot of the ratio of PRNT 50 between Y501 and N501 viruses. Triangles represent sera drawn two weeks after the second dose; circles represent sera drawn four weeks after the second dose.
  • Figure 133 Engineered mutations. Nucleotide and amino acid positions are indicated. Deletions are depicted by dotted lines. Mutant nucleotides are in red. L, leader sequence; ORF, open reading frame; RBD, receptor binding domain; S, spike glycoprotein; S1, N-terminal furin cleavage fragment of S; S2, C-terminal furin cleavage fragment of S; E, envelope protein; M, membrane protein; N, nucleoprotein; UTR, untranslated region.
  • L leader sequence
  • ORF open reading frame
  • RBD receptor binding domain
  • S spike glycoprotein
  • S1 N-terminal furin cleavage fragment of S
  • S2 C-terminal furin cleavage fragment of S
  • E envelope protein
  • M membrane protein
  • N nucleoprotein
  • UTR untranslated region.
  • Figure 134 Plaque morphologies of WT (USA-WA1/2020), mutant N501Y, A69/70+N501Y+D614G, and E484K+N501Y+D614G SARS-CoV-2s on Vero E6 cells.
  • FIG. 136 PRNT 50 s of twenty BNT162b2-vaccinated human sera against wild-type (WT) and mutant SARS-CoV-2.
  • WT USA-WA1/2020
  • N501Y wild-type
  • WT and A69/70+N501Y+D614G mutant N501Y
  • WT and E484K+N501Y+D614G Seven (triangles) and thirteen (circles) sera were drawn 2 and 4 weeks after the second dose of vaccination, respectively.
  • Sera with different PRNT 50 s against WT and mutant viruses are connected by lines. Results in (a) were from one experiment; results in (b) and (c) were from another set of experiments. Each data point is the average of duplicate assay results.
  • Figure 138 Diagram of engineered spike substitutions and deletions. The genome and sequence of clinical isolate USA-WA1/2020 are used as the wild-type virus in this study. Mutations from the United Kingdom B.1.1.7, Brazilian P.1, and South African B.1.351 lineages are presented. Deletions are indicated by dotted lines. Mutated nucleotides are in red. Nucleotide and amino acid positions are indicated.
  • L - leader sequence L - leader sequence; ORF - open reading frame; RBD - receptor binding domain; S - spike glycoprotein; S1 - N-terminal furin cleavage fragment of S; S2 - C-terminal furin cleavage fragment of S; E - envelope protein; M - membrane protein; N - nucleoprotein; UTR - untranslated region.
  • Figure 139 Plaque morphologies of USA-WA1/2020 and mutant SARS-CoV-2's. The plaque assays were performed on Vero E6 cells in 6-well plates.
  • FIG. 140 Scheme of BNT162 immunization and serum collection.
  • Figure 141 Serum Neutralization of Variant Strains of SARS-CoV-2 after the Second Dose of BNT162b2 Vaccine. Shown are the results of 50% plaque reduction neutralization testing (PRNT50) with the use of 20 samples obtained from 15 trial participants 2 weeks (circles) or 4 weeks (triangles) after the administration of the second dose of the BNT162b2 vaccine.
  • the mutant viruses were obtained by engineering the full set of mutations in the B.1.1.7, P.1., or B.1.351 lineages or subsets of the S gene mutations in the B.1.351 lineage (B.1.351-D242- 244+D614G and B.1.351-RBD-D614G) into USA-WA1/2020.
  • Each data point represents the geometric mean PRNT 50 obtained with a serum sample against the indicated virus, including data from repeat experiments, as detailed in Table 31.
  • the data for USA-WA1/2020 are from three experiments; for B.1.1.7-spike, B.1.351- ⁇ 242-244+D614G, and B.1.351-RBD-D614G viruses from one experiment each; and for P.l-spike and B.1.351-spike viruses from two experiments each.
  • the neutralization titer was determined in duplicate assays, and the geometric mean was taken.
  • LOD limit of detection.
  • Figure 142 Durability of BNT162b2-induced T cell responses.
  • Common pathogen T-cell epitope pools CEF (CMV, EBV, and influenza virus HLA class I epitopes) and CEFT (CMV, EBV, influenza virus, and tetanus toxoid HLA class II epitopes) served to assess general T-cell reactivity, cell culture medium served as negative control.
  • Each dot represents the sum of normalized mean spot count from duplicate wells stimulated with two peptide pools corresponding to the full-length wt S protein for one study subject, after subtraction of the medium-only control.
  • Ratios above post-vaccination data points are the number of subjects with detectable CD4 + or CD8 + T-cell responses within the total number of tested subjects per dose cohort and time-point.
  • Figure 143 A specific vaccine mRNA signal (red) is detected in the LN 6h post injection using modV9 probe in dual IHC-ISH assay.
  • Vaccine is mostly localized to subcapsular sinus (LN in 9 and 5 positions) and B cell follicles (LN in 12 and 1 positions).
  • Dendritic cells are visualized by CD11c staining (turquoise, upper images) and only some of them uptake the vaccine.
  • Majority of CD169+ macrophages subcapsular sinus macrophages, turquoise, middle images
  • B cells CD19+, turquoise, lower images
  • Figure 144 A specific vaccine mRNA signal (red) is detected in the spleen 6h post injection using modV9 probe in dual IHC-ISH assay. Majority of the vaccine signal is detected in the white pulp. Dendritic cells are visualized by CD11c staining (turquoise, upper images) and only some of them uptake the vaccine. A small portion of F4/80+ macrophages (turquoise, middle images) uptake the vaccine. B cells (CD19+, turquoise, lower images) are the major population showing the vaccine signal.
  • FIG. 145 Exemplary Stability Data. Exemplary data from certain stability studies (see, for example, Example 42, are shown for a BNT162b2 LNP preparation at indicated concentrations and temperature conditions, as assessed by ELISA characterizing antibodies reactive to S1 spike protein.
  • Figure 146 provides an exemplary pandemic supply product packaging overview.
  • Figure 147 provides an exemplary vaccine storage & handling at the point of vaccination overview.
  • Figure 148 provides a diagram of example vial trays according to FEFCO 0201 and FEFCO 0204.
  • Figure 149 provides a diagram of an example vial tray according to FEFCO 0426.
  • Figure 150 provides a diagram of an example vial tray (Tray 7 according to Table 33 in Example 45).
  • Figure 151 provides a picture of one type of thermal shipper that can be used, with the following descriptions: A) Dry ice pod - holds the top layer of dry ice; B) Vial trays - the vial trays look like small pizza boxes. Each vial try contains multiple dose vials. Each thermal shipping container can have up to 5 vial trays inside. C) Box that holds the vial trays - box within the thermal shipping container that includes the vial trays. This box has handles and can be fully removed from the thermal shipping container. D) Foam lid - top foam lid that includes an embedded temperature-monitor device and remains connected to the box; E) Thermal shipping container - outer box of the thermal shipping container.
  • Figure 152 provides a picture of one type of thermal shipper that can be used, with the following descriptions: A) Dry ice pod - holds the top layer of dry ice; B) Vial tray - the vial trays look like small pizza boxes. Each vial try contains multiple dose vials. C) Box that holds the vial trays - box within the thermal shipping container that includes the vial tray. This box can be fully removed from the thermal shipping container. D) Foam lid - top foam lid that can be removed from the thermal shipping container. The temperature-monitor device is located in a foam packet on the top of the lid. E) Thermal shipping container - outer box of the thermal shipping container.
  • Figure 153 provides the positions of the edge and center vials in the stack of vial trays.
  • Figure 154 provides the dynamic thawing profile during a 5 minute walk.
  • Figure 155 provides the dynamic thawing profile during a 10 minute walk.
  • Figure 156 provides the dynamic thawing profile during a 15 minute walk.
  • Figure 157 provides a depiction of Configuration A as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 157 i) shows how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 157 ii) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box;
  • Figure 157 iii) shows the dimensions of a single tray;
  • Figure 157 iv) shows a top view of how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 158 provides a depiction of Configuration B as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 158 i) shows how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 158 ii) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box;
  • Figure 158 iii) shows the dimensions of a single tray;
  • Figure 158 iv) shows a top view of how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 159 provides a depiction of Configurations C and D as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 159 i) shows how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 159 ii) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box;
  • Figure 159 iii) shows the dimensions of a single tray;
  • Figure 159 iv) shows a top view of how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 160 provides a depiction of Configuration E as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 160 i) shows how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 160 ii) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box;
  • Figure 160 iii) shows the dimensions of a single tray;
  • Figure 160 iv) shows a top view of how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 161 provides a depiction of Configuration F as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 161 i) shows how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 161 ii) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box;
  • Figure 161 iii) shows the dimensions of a single tray;
  • Figure 161 iv) shows a top view of how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 162 provides a depiction of Configuration G as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 162 i) shows how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 162 ii) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box;
  • Figure 162 iii) shows the dimensions of a single tray;
  • Figure 162 iv) shows a top view of how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 163 provides a depiction of Configuration H as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 163 i) and ii) show how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 163 iii) shows the dimensions of a single tray;
  • Figure 163 iv) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 164 provides a depiction of Configuration I as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 164 i) shows how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 164 ii) shows the dimensions of a single tray; and
  • Figure 164 iii) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 165 provides a depiction of Configuration J as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 165 i) shows how the vials are placed in the tray;
  • Figure 165 ii) shows the dimensions of a single tray; and
  • Figure 165 iii) shows how the trays are stacked in the payload box.
  • Figure 166 provides a depiction of Configuration K as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 166 shows how the vials are placed in the tray and the dimensions of the length and base of the tray.
  • Figure 167 provides a depiction of Configuration L as described in Table 35.
  • Figure 167 shows how the vials are placed in the tray and the dimensions of the length and base of the tray.
  • the terms used herein are defined as described in "A multilingual glossary of biotechnological terms: (lUPAC Recommendations)", H.G.W. Leuenberger, B. Nagel, and H. Kolbl, Eds., Helvetica Chimica Acta, CH-4010 Basel, Switzerland, (1995).
  • peptide comprises oligo- and polypeptides and refers to substances which comprise about two or more, about 3 or more, about 4 or more, about 6 or more, about 8 or more, about 10 or more, about 13 or more, about 16 or more, about 20 or more, and up to about 50, about 100 or about 150, consecutive amino acids linked to one another via peptide bonds.
  • protein or “polypeptide” refers to large peptides, in particular peptides having at least about 150 amino acids, but the terms "peptide", “protein” and “polypeptide” are used herein usually as synonyms.
  • a “therapeutic protein” has a positive or advantageous effect on a condition or disease state of a subject when provided to the subject in a therapeutically effective amount.
  • a therapeutic protein has curative or palliative properties and may be administered to ameliorate, relieve, alleviate, reverse, delay onset of or lessen the severity of one or more symptoms of a disease or disorder.
  • a therapeutic protein may have prophylactic properties and may be used to delay the onset of a disease or to lessen the severity of such disease or pathological condition.
  • the term "therapeutic protein” includes entire proteins or peptides, and can also refer to therapeutically active fragments thereof. It can also include therapeutically active variants of a protein. Examples of therapeutically active proteins include, but are not limited to, antigens for vaccination and immunostimulants such as cytokines.
  • “Fragment” with reference to an amino acid sequence (peptide or protein), relates to a part of an amino acid sequence, i.e. a sequence which represents the amino acid sequence shortened at the N-terminus and/or C-terminus.
  • a fragment shortened at the C-terminus is obtainable e.g. by translation of a truncated open reading frame that lacks the 3'-end of the open reading frame.
  • a fragment shortened at the N-terminus (C- terminal fragment) is obtainable e.g. by translation of a truncated open reading frame that lacks the 5'-end of the open reading frame, as long as the truncated open reading frame comprises a start codon that serves to initiate translation.
  • a fragment of an amino acid sequence comprises e.g. at least 50 %, at least 60 %, at least 70 %, at least 80%, at least 90% of the amino acid residues from an amino acid sequence.
  • a fragment of an amino acid sequence preferably comprises at least 6, in particular at least 8, at least 12, at least 15, at least 20, at least 30, at least 50, or at least 100 consecutive amino acids from an amino acid sequence.
  • variant herein is meant an amino acid sequence that differs from a parent amino acid sequence by virtue of at least one amino acid modification.
  • the parent amino acid sequence may be a naturally occurring or wild type (WT) amino acid sequence, or may be a modified version of a wild type amino acid sequence.
  • WT wild type
  • the variant amino acid sequence has at least one amino acid modification compared to the parent amino acid sequence, e.g., from 1 to about 20 amino acid modifications, and preferably from 1 to about 10 or from 1 to about 5 amino acid modifications compared to the parent.
  • wild type or “WT” or “native” herein is meant an amino acid sequence that is found in nature, including allelic variations.
  • a wild type amino acid sequence, peptide or protein has an amino acid sequence that has not been intentionally modified.
  • variants of an amino acid sequence comprise amino acid insertion variants, amino acid addition variants, amino acid deletion variants and/or amino acid substitution variants.
  • variant includes all mutants, splice variants, posttranslationally modified variants, conformations, isoforms, allelic variants, species variants, and species homologs, in particular those which are naturally occurring.
  • variant includes, in particular, fragments of an amino acid sequence.
  • Amino acid insertion variants comprise insertions of single or two or more amino acids in a particular amino acid sequence. In the case of amino acid sequence variants having an insertion, one or more amino acid residues are inserted into a particular site in an amino acid sequence, although random insertion with appropriate screening of the resulting product is also possible.
  • Amino acid addition variants comprise amino- and/or carboxy-terminal fusions of one or more amino acids, such as 1, 2, 3, 5, 10, 20, 30, 50, or more amino acids.
  • Amino acid deletion variants are characterized by the removal of one or more amino acids from the sequence, such as by removal of 1, 2, 3, 5, 10, 20, 30, 50, or more amino acids. The deletions may be in any position of the protein.
  • Amino acid deletion variants that comprise the deletion at the N-terminal and/or C-terminal end of the protein are also called N-terminal and/or C- terminal truncation variants.
  • Amino acid substitution variants are characterized by at least one residue in the sequence being removed and another residue being inserted in its place. Preference is given to the modifications being in positions in the amino acid sequence which are not conserved between homologous proteins or peptides and/or to replacing amino acids with other ones having similar properties.
  • amino acid changes in peptide and protein variants are conservative amino acid changes, i.e., substitutions of similarly charged or uncharged amino acids.
  • a conservative amino acid change involves substitution of one of a family of amino acids which are related in their side chains.
  • Naturally occurring amino acids are generally divided into four families: acidic (aspartate, glutamate), basic (lysine, arginine, histidine), non-polar (alanine, valine, leucine, isoleucine, proline, phenylalanine, methionine, tryptophan), and uncharged polar (glycine, asparagine, glutamine, cysteine, serine, threonine, tyrosine) amino acids. Phenylalanine, tryptophan, and tyrosine are sometimes classified jointly as aromatic amino acids.
  • conservative amino acid substitutions include substitutions within the following groups: glycine, alanine; valine, isoleucine, leucine; aspartic acid, glutamic acid; asparagine, glutamine; serine, threonine; lysine, arginine; and phenylalanine, tyrosine.
  • the degree of similarity, preferably identity between a given amino acid sequence and an amino acid sequence which is a variant of said given amino acid sequence will be at least about 60%, 70%, 80%, 81%, 82%, 83%, 84%, 85%, 86%, 87%, 88%, 89%, 90%, 91%, 92%, 93%, 94%, 95%, 96%, 97%, 98%, or 99%.
  • the degree of similarity or identity is given preferably for an amino acid region which is at least about 10%, at least about 20%, at least about 30%, at least about 40%, at least about 50%, at least about 60%, at least about 70%, at least about 80%, at least about 90% or about 100% of the entire length of the reference amino acid sequence.
  • the degree of similarity or identity is given preferably for at least about 20, at least about 40, at least about 60, at least about 80, at least about 100, at least about 120, at least about 140, at least about 160, at least about 180, or about 200 amino acids, in some embodiments continuous amino acids.
  • the degree of similarity or identity is given for the entire length of the reference amino acid sequence.
  • the alignment for determining sequence similarity, preferably sequence identity can be done with art known tools, preferably using the best sequence alignment, for example, using Align, using standard settings, preferably EMBOSS::needle, Matrix: Blosum62, Gap Open 10.0, Gap Extend 0.5.
  • Sequence similarity indicates the percentage of amino acids that either are identical or that represent conservative amino acid substitutions.
  • Sequence identity between two amino acid sequences indicates the percentage of amino acids that are identical between the sequences.
  • Sequnce identity between two nucleic acid sequences indicates the percentage of nucleotides that are identical between the sequences.
  • % identical refers, in particular, to the percentage of nucleotides or amino acids which are identical in an optimal alignment between the sequences to be compared. Said percentage is purely statistical, and the differences between the two sequences may be but are not necessarily randomly distributed over the entire length of the sequences to be compared. Comparisons of two sequences are usually carried out by comparing the sequences, after optimal alignment, with respect to a segment or "window of comparison", in order to identify local regions of corresponding sequences. The optimal alignment for a comparison may be carried out manually or with the aid of the local homology algorithm by Smith and Waterman, 1981, Ads App. Math. 2, 482, with the aid of the local homology algorithm by Neddleman and Wunsch, 1970, J.
  • NCBI National Center for Biotechnology Information
  • the algorithm parameters used for BLASTN algorithm on the NCBI website include: (i) Expect Threshold set to 10; (ii) Word Size set to 28; (iii) Max matches in a query range set to 0; (iv) Match/Mismatch Scores set to 1, -2; (v) Gap Costs set to Linear; and (vi) the filter for low complexity regions being used.
  • the algorithm parameters used for BLASTP algorithm on the NCBI website include: (i) Expect Threshold set to 10; (ii) Word Size set to 3; (iii) Max matches in a query range set to 0; (iv) Matrix set to BLOSUM62; (v) Gap Costs set to Existence: 11 Extension: 1; and (vi) conditional compositional score matrix adjustment.
  • Percentage identity is obtained by determining the number of identical positions at which the sequences to be compared correspond, dividing this number by the number of positions compared (e.g., the number of positions in the reference sequence) and multiplying this result by 100.
  • the degree of similarity or identity is given for a region which is at least about 50%, at least about 60%, at least about 70%, at least about 80%, at least about 90% or about 100% of the entire length of the reference sequence.
  • the degree of identity is given for at least about 100, at least about 120, at least about 140, at least about 160, at least about 180, or about 200 nucleotides, in some embodiments continuous nucleotides.
  • the degree of similarity or identity is given for the entire length of the reference sequence.
  • Homologous amino acid sequences exhibit according to the disclosure at least 40%, in particular at least 50%, at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, at least 90% and preferably at least 95%, at least 98 or at least 99% identity of the amino acid residues.
  • amino acid sequence variants described herein may readily be prepared by the skilled person, for example, by recombinant DNA manipulation.
  • the manipulation of DNA sequences for preparing peptides or proteins having substitutions, additions, insertions or deletions, is described in detail in Sambrook et al. (1989), for example.
  • the peptides and amino acid variants described herein may be readily prepared with the aid of known peptide synthesis techniques such as, for example, by solid phase synthesis and similar methods.
  • a fragment or variant of an amino acid sequence is preferably a "functional fragment” or “functional variant".
  • the term "functional fragment” or “functional variant” of an amino acid sequence relates to any fragment or variant exhibiting one or more functional properties identical or similar to those of the amino acid sequence from which it is derived, i.e., it is functionally equivalent.
  • one particular function is one or more immunogenic activities displayed by the amino acid sequence from which the fragment or variant is derived.
  • the modifications in the amino acid sequence of the parent molecule or sequence do not significantly affect or alter the characteristics of the molecule or sequence.
  • the function of the functional fragment or functional variant may be reduced but still significantly present, e.g., immunogenicity of the functional variant may be at least 50%, at least 60%, at least 70%, at least 80%, or at least 90% of the parent molecule or sequence.
  • immunogenicity of the functional fragment or functional variant may be enhanced compared to the parent molecule or sequence.
  • amino acid sequence "derived from” a designated amino acid sequence (peptide, protein or polypeptide) refers to the origin of the first amino acid sequence.
  • amino acid sequence which is derived from a particular amino acid sequence has an amino acid sequence that is identical, essentially identical or homologous to that particular sequence or a fragment thereof.
  • Amino acid sequences derived from a particular amino acid sequence may be variants of that particular sequence or a fragment thereof.
  • the antigens suitable for use herein may be altered such that they vary in sequence from the naturally occurring or native sequences from which they were derived, while retaining the desirable activity of the native sequences.
  • an "instructional material” or “instructions” includes a publication, a recording, a diagram, or any other medium of expression which can be used to communicate the usefulness of the compositions and methods of the invention.
  • the instructional material of the kit of the invention may, for example, be affixed to a container which contains the compositions of the invention or be shipped together with a container which contains the compositions. Alternatively, the instructional material may be shipped separately from the container with the intention that the instructional material and the compositions be used cooperatively by the recipient.
  • isolated means altered or removed from the natural state.
  • a nucleic acid or a peptide naturally present in a living animal is not “isolated”, but the same nucleic acid or peptide partially or completely separated from the coexisting materials of its natural state is “isolated”.
  • An isolated nucleic acid or protein can exist in substantially purified form, or can exist in a non-native environment such as, for example, a host cell.
  • recombinant in the context of the present invention means "made through genetic engineering”.
  • a “recombinant object” such as a recombinant nucleic acid in the context of the present invention is not occurring naturally.
  • naturally occurring refers to the fact that an object can be found in nature.
  • a peptide or nucleic acid that is present in an organism (including viruses) and can be isolated from a source in nature and which has not been intentionally modified by man in the laboratory is naturally occurring.
  • Physiological pH refers to a pH of about 7.5.
  • the term “genetic modification” or simply “modification” includes the transfection of cells with nucleic acid.
  • the term “transfection” relates to the introduction of nucleic acids, in particular RNA, into a cell.
  • the term “transfection” also includes the introduction of a nucleic acid into a cell or the uptake of a nucleic acid by such cell, wherein the cell may be present in a subject, e.g., a patient.
  • a cell for transfection of a nucleic acid described herein can be present in vitro or in vivo, e.g. the cell can form part of an organ, a tissue and/or an organism of a patient.
  • transfection can be transient or stable. For some applications of transfection, it is sufficient if the transfected genetic material is only transiently expressed. RNA can be transfected into cells to transiently express its coded protein. Since the nucleic acid introduced in the transfection process is usually not integrated into the nuclear genome, the foreign nucleic acid will be diluted through mitosis or degraded. Cells allowing episomal amplification of nucleic acids greatly reduce the rate of dilution. If it is desired that the transfected nucleic acid actually remains in the genome of the cell and its daughter cells, a stable transfection must occur. Such stable transfection can be achieved by using virus-based systems or transposon-based systems for transfection. Generally, nucleic acid encoding antigen is transiently transfected into cells. RNA can be transfected into cells to transiently express its coded protein.
  • the term "seroconversion” includes a ⁇ 4-fold rise from before vaccination to 1-month post Dose 2.
  • a "primary container” refers to an outer container of a system or kit, wherein other containers (such as a payload container and/or a dry ice container) can be placed inside.
  • a “payload container” refers to a container that can hold the "payload” - or the temperature-sensitive material - that desirably is kept at a low temperature.
  • a "tray” refers to a container intended to house the payload - or the temperature-sensitive material - and wherein the tray is intended to be placed within the payload container.
  • a "temperature-sensitive material” refers to a biological and/or pharmaceutical composition, wherein the chemical, physical, and/or medicinal properties are impacted by elevated temperatures (e.g. temperatures above 0°C).
  • a "dry ice container” refers to a container that can adequately hold dry ice to be used within the kits and/or container systems described herein. Coronavirus
  • Coronaviruses are enveloped, positive-sense, single-stranded RNA ((+) ssRNA) viruses. They have the largest genomes (26-32 kb) among known RNA viruses and are phylogenetically divided into four genera (a, b, y, and d), with betacoronaviruses further subdivided into four lineages (A, B, C, and D). Coronaviruses infect a wide range of avian and mammalian species, including humans. Some human coronaviruses generally cause mild respiratory diseases, although severity can be greater in infants, the elderly, and the immunocompromised.
  • SARS-CoV-2 severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2
  • SARS-CoV- 2 SARS-CoV- 2
  • MN908947.3 belongs to betacoronavirus lineage B. It has at least 70% sequence similarity to SARS-CoV.
  • coronaviruses have four structural proteins, namely, envelope (E), membrane (M), nucleocapsid (N), and spike (S).
  • E and M proteins have important functions in the viral assembly, and the N protein is necessary for viral RNA synthesis.
  • the critical glycoprotein S is responsible for virus binding and entry into target cells.
  • the S protein is synthesized as a single- chain inactive precursor that is cleaved by furin-like host proteases in the producing cell into two noncovalently associated subunits, S1 and S2.
  • the S1 subunit contains the receptor- binding domain (RBD), which recognizes the host-cell receptor.
  • the S2 subunit contains the fusion peptide, two heptad repeats, and a transmembrane domain, all of which are required to mediate fusion of the viral and host-cell membranes by undergoing a large conformational rearrangement.
  • the S1 and S2 subunits trimerize to form a large prefusion spike.
  • the S precursor protein of SARS-CoV-2 can be proteolytically cleaved into S1 (685 aa) and S2 (588 aa) subunits.
  • the S1 subunit consists of the receptor-binding domain (RBD), which mediates virus entry into sensitive cells through the host angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor.
  • RBD receptor-binding domain
  • the present invention comprises the use of RNA encoding an amino acid sequence comprising SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof.
  • the RNA encodes a peptide or protein comprising at least an epitope SARS-CoV-2 S protein or an immunogenic variant thereof for inducing an immune response against coronavirus S protein, in particular SARS- CoV-2 S protein in a subject.
  • amino acid sequence comprising SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof is also designated herein as "vaccine antigen”, “peptide and protein antigen", "antigen molecule” or simply "antigen”.
  • the SARS-CoV-2 S protein, an immunogenic variant thereof, or an immunogenic fragment of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein or the immunogenic variant thereof is also designated herein as "antigenic peptide or protein" or "antigenic sequence”.
  • SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus full length spike (S) protein consist of 1273 amino acids (see SEQ ID NO: 1).
  • full length spike (S) protein according to SEQ ID NO: 1 is modified in such a way that the prototypical prefusion conformation is stabilized. Stabilization of the prefusion conformation may be obtained by introducing two consecutive proline substitutions at AS residues 986 and 987 in the full length spike protein.
  • spike (S) protein stabilized protein variants are obtained in a way that the amino acid residue at position 986 is exchanged to proline and the amino acid residue at position 987 is also exchanged to proline.
  • a SARS-CoV-2 S protein variant comprises the amino acid sequence shown in SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • the vaccine antigen described herein comprises, consists essentially of or consists of a spike protein (S) of SARS-CoV-2, a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 3819 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 1273 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7.
  • the vaccine antigen comprises, consists essentially of or consists of SARS- CoV-2 spike S1 fragment (S1) (the S1 subunit of a spike protein (S) of SARS-CoV-2), a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 49 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 17 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • the vaccine antigen comprises, consists essentially of or consists of the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the S1 subunit of a spike protein (S) of SARS-CoV-2, a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof.
  • RBD receptor binding domain
  • S spike protein
  • the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof is also referred to herein as "RBD” or "RBD domain”.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 979 to 1584 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 327 to 528 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a signal peptide is fused, either directly or through a linker, to a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof, i.e., the antigenic peptide or protein.
  • a signal peptide is fused to the above described amino acid sequences derived from SARS-CoV-2 S protein or immunogenic fragments thereof (antigenic peptides or proteins) comprised by the vaccine antigens described above.
  • Such signal peptides are sequences, which typically exhibit a length of about 15 to 30 amino acids and are preferably located at the N-terminus of the antigenic peptide or protein, without being limited thereto.
  • Signal peptides as defined herein preferably allow the transport of the antigenic peptide or protein as encoded by the RNA into a defined cellular compartment, preferably the cell surface, the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) or the endosomal-lysosomal compartment.
  • the signal peptide sequence as defined herein includes, without being limited thereto, the signal peptide sequence of SARS-CoV-2 S protein, in particular a sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 or 1 to 19 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or a functional variant thereof.
  • a signal sequence comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a signal sequence comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • RNA encoding a signal sequence comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%,
  • RNA encoding a signal sequence comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 48 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 16 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a signal sequence comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 19 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 19 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 19 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 19 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a signal sequence comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 19 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • RNA encoding a signal sequence comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 57 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 57 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 57 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 57 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 19 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 9
  • RNA encoding a signal sequence comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 57 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 19 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • the signal peptide sequence as defined herein further includes, without being limited thereto, the signal peptide sequence of an immunoglobulin, e.g., the signal peptide sequence of an immunoglobulin heavy chain variable region, wherein the immunoglobulin may be human immunoglobulin.
  • the signal peptide sequence as defined herein includes a sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 22 of SEQ ID NO: 31 or a functional variant thereof.
  • a signal sequence comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 22 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 22 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 22 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 22 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a signal sequence comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 22 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • RNA encoding a signal sequence comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 119 of SEQ ID NO: 32, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 119 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 119 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 119 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 22 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucle
  • RNA encoding a signal sequence comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 119 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 22 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • Such signal peptides are preferably used in order to promote secretion of the encoded antigenic peptide or protein. More preferably, a signal peptide as defined herein is fused to an encoded antigenic peptide or protein as defined herein.
  • the RNA described herein comprises at least one coding region encoding an antigenic peptide or protein and a signal peptide, said signal peptide preferably being fused to the antigenic peptide or protein, more preferably to the N-terminus of the antigenic peptide or protein as described herein.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 1 or 7.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 15, 16, 19, 20, 24, or 25, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 15, 16, 19, 20, 24, or 25, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 15, 16, 19, 20, 24, or 25, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 15, 16, 19, 20, 24, or 25; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 15, 16, 19, 20, 24, or 25; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2049 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 683 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 1 to 2055 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 685 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 3, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 3, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 3, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 3.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 3.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 4, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 4, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 4, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 4; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 3, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 3, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 3, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%,
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 221 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 221 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 221 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 221 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 221 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 716 of SEQ ID NO: 30, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 716 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 716 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 716 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 221 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 716 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 221 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 224 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 224 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 224 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 224 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 224 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 725 of SEQ ID NO: 32, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 725 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 725 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 725 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 224 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 725 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 224 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a trimerization domain is fused, either directly or through a linker, e.g., a glycine/serine linker, to a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof, i.e., the antigenic peptide or protein. Accordingly, in one embodiment, a trimerization domain is fused to the above described amino acid sequences derived from SARS-CoV-2 S protein or immunogenic fragments thereof (antigenic peptides or proteins) comprised by the vaccine antigens described above (which may optionally be fused to a signal peptide as described above).
  • a linker e.g., a glycine/serine linker
  • trimerization domains are preferably located at the C-terminus of the antigenic peptide or protein, without being limited thereto.
  • Trimerization domains as defined herein preferably allow the trimerization of the antigenic peptide or protein as encoded by the RNA.
  • trimerization domains as defined herein include, without being limited thereto, foldon, the natural trimerization domain of T4 fibritin.
  • the C-terminal domain of T4 fibritin (foldon) is obligatory for the formation of the fibritin trimer structure and can be used as an artificial trimerization domain.
  • the trimerization domain as defined herein includes, without being limited thereto, a sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 3 to 29 of SEQ ID NO: 10 or a functional variant thereof. In one embodiment, the trimerization domain as defined herein includes, without being limited thereto, a sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 10 or a functional variant thereof.
  • a trimerization domain comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 3 to 29 of SEQ ID NO: 10, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 3 to 29 of SEQ ID NO: 10, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 3 to 29 of SEQ ID NO: 10, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 3 to 29 of SEQ ID NO: 10.
  • a trimerization domain comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 3 to 29 of SEQ ID NO: 10.
  • RNA encoding a trimerization domain comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 7 to 87 of SEQ ID NO: 11, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 7 to 87 of SEQ ID NO: 11, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 7 to 87 of SEQ ID NO: 11, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 7 to 87 of SEQ ID NO: 11; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 3 to 29 of SEQ ID NO: 10, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80%
  • RNA encoding a trimerization domain comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 7 to 87 of SEQ ID NO: 11; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 3 to 29 of SEQ ID NO: 10.
  • a trimerization domain comprises the amino acid sequence SEQ ID NO: 10, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 10, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 10, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 10.
  • a trimerization domain comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 10.
  • RNA encoding a trimerization domain comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 11, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 11, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 11, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 11; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 10, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 10, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 10, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%
  • trimerization domains are preferably used in order to promote trimerization of the encoded antigenic peptide or protein. More preferably, a trimerization domain as defined herein is fused to an antigenic peptide or protein as defined herein.
  • the RNA described herein comprises at least one coding region encoding an antigenic peptide or protein and a trimerization domain as defined herein, said trimerization domain preferably being fused to the antigenic peptide or protein, more preferably to the C-terminus of the antigenic peptide or protein.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 6; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 17, 21, or 26, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 17, 21, or 26, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 17, 21, or 26, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 17, 21, or 26; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or the amino acid sequence
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 18, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 18, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 18, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 18.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 18.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 824 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 257 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 833 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 260 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a transmembrane domain domain is fused, either directly or through a linker, e.g., a glycine/serine linker, to a SARS-CoV-2 S protein, a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof, i.e., the antigenic peptide or protein.
  • a transmembrane domain is fused to the above described amino acid sequences derived from SARS-CoV-2 S protein or immunogenic fragments thereof (antigenic peptides or proteins) comprised by the vaccine antigens described above (which may optionally be fused to a signal peptide and/or trimerization domain as described above).
  • transmembrane domains are preferably located at the C-terminus of the antigenic peptide or protein, without being limited thereto.
  • such transmembrane domains are located at the C-terminus of the trimerization domain, if present, without being limited thereto.
  • a trimerization domain is present between the SARS-CoV-2 S protein, a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof, i.e., the antigenic peptide or protein, and the transmembrane domain.
  • Transmembrane domains as defined herein preferably allow the anchoring into a cellular membrane of the antigenic peptide or protein as encoded by the RNA.
  • the transmembrane domain sequence as defined herein includes, without being limited thereto, the transmembrane domain sequence of SARS-CoV-2 S protein, in particular a sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1207 to 1254 of SEQ ID NO: 1 or a functional variant thereof.
  • a transmembrane domain sequence comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1207 to 1254 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1207 to 1254 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or a functional fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1207 to 1254 of SEQ ID NO: 1, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1207 to 1254 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a transmembrane domain sequence comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1207 to 1254 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • RNA encoding a transmembrane domain sequence comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 3619 to 3762 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 3619 to 3762 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 3619 to 3762 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 3619 to 3762 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1207 to 1254 of SEQ ID NO: 1, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%
  • RNA encoding a transmembrane domain sequence (i) comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 3619 to 3762 of SEQ ID NO: 2, 8 or 9; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1207 to 1254 of SEQ ID NO: 1.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 54 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 1 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 111 to 986 of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 20 to 311 of SEQ ID NO: 29.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of nucleotides 120 to 995 of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of amino acids 23 to 314 of SEQ ID NO: 31.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 30, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 30, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 30, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 30; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 29, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 29, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 29, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%,
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 32, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 32, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 32, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 32; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 31, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 31, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 31, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%,
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 28, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 28, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 28, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 28.
  • a vaccine antigen comprises the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 28.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 27, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 27, or a fragment of the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 27, or the nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 27; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 28, an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 28, or an immunogenic fragment of the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 28, or the amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%,
  • the vaccine antigens described above comprise a contiguous sequence of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus spike (S) protein that consists of or essentially consists of the above described amino acid sequences derived from SARS-CoV-2 S protein or immunogenic fragments thereof (antigenic peptides or proteins) comprised by the vaccine antigens described above.
  • the vaccine antigens described above comprise a contiguous sequence of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus spike (S) protein of no more than 220 amino acids, 215 amino acids, 210 amino acids, or 205 amino acids.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is nucleoside modified messenger RNA (modRNA) described herein as BNT162b1 (RBP020.3), BNT162b2 (RBP020.1 or RBP020.2). In one embodiment, RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is nucleoside modified messenger RNA (modRNA) described herein as RBP020.2.
  • modRNA nucleoside modified messenger RNA
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is nucleoside modified messenger RNA (modRNA) and (i) comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 21, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 21, and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5, or an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5.
  • modRNA nucleoside modified messenger RNA
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is nucleoside modified messenger RNA (modRNA) and (i) comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 21; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 5.
  • modRNA nucleoside modified messenger RNA
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is nucleoside modified messenger RNA (modRNA) and (i) comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 19, or 20, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 19, or 20, and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7, or an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • modRNA nucleoside modified messenger RNA
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is nucleoside modified messenger RNA (modRNA) and (i) comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 19, or 20; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • modRNA nucleoside modified messenger RNA
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is nucleoside modified messenger RNA (modRNA) and (i) comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 20, a nucleotide sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 20, and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7, or an amino acid sequence having at least 99%, 98%, 97%, 96%, 95%, 90%, 85%, or 80% identity to the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • modRNA nucleoside modified messenger RNA
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is nucleoside modified messenger RNA (modRNA) and (i) comprises the nucleotide sequence of SEQ ID NO: 20; and/or (ii) encodes an amino acid sequence comprising the amino acid sequence of SEQ ID NO: 7.
  • modRNA nucleoside modified messenger RNA
  • the term "vaccine” refers to a composition that induces an immune response upon inoculation into a subject.
  • the induced immune response provides protective immunity.
  • the RNA encoding the antigen molecule is expressed in cells of the subject to provide the antigen molecule. In one embodiment, expression of the antigen molecule is at the cell surface or into the extracellular space. In one embodiment, the antigen molecule is presented in the context of MHC. In one embodiment, the RNA encoding the antigen molecule is transiently expressed in cells of the subject. In one embodiment, after administration of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule, in particular after intramuscular administration of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule, expression of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule in muscle occurs. In one embodiment, after administration of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule, expression of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule in spleen occurs.
  • RNA encoding the antigen molecule after administration of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule, expression of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule in antigen presenting cells, preferably professional antigen presenting cells occurs.
  • the antigen presenting cells are selected from the group consisting of dendritic cells, macrophages and B cells.
  • no or essentially no expression of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule in lung and/or liver occurs.
  • expression of the RNA encoding the antigen molecule in spleen is at least 5-fold the amount of expression in lung.
  • the methods and agents e.g., mRNA compositions, described herein following administration, in particular following intramuscular administration, to a subject result in delivery of the RNA encoding a vaccine antigen to lymph nodes and/or spleen.
  • RNA encoding a vaccine antigen is detectable in lymph nodes and/or spleen 6 hours or later following administration and preferably up to 6 days or longer.
  • the methods and agents e.g., mRNA compositions, described herein following administration, in particular following intramuscular administration, to a subject result in delivery of the RNA encoding a vaccine antigen to B cell follicles, subcapsular sinus, and/or T cell zone, in particular B cell follicles and/or subcapsular sinus of lymph nodes.
  • the methods and agents e.g., mRNA compositions, described herein following administration, in particular following intramuscular administration, to a subject result in delivery of the RNA encoding a vaccine antigen to B cells (CD19+), subcapsular sinus macrophages (CD169+) and/or dendritic cells ( CD11c+) in the T cell zone and intermediary sinus of lymph nodes, in particular to B cells (CD19+) and/or subcapsular sinus macrophages (CD169+) of lymph nodes.
  • B cells CD19+
  • subcapsular sinus macrophages CD169+
  • CD11c+ dendritic cells
  • the methods and agents e.g., mRNA compositions, described herein following administration, in particular following intramuscular administration, to a subject result in delivery of the RNA encoding a vaccine antigen to white pulp of spleen.
  • the methods and agents e.g., mRNA compositions, described herein following administration, in particular following intramuscular administration, to a subject result in delivery of the RNA encoding a vaccine antigen to B cells, DCs (CD11c+), in particular those surrounding the B cells, and/or mcrophages of spleen, in particular to B cells and/or DCs (CD11c+).
  • the vaccine antigen is expressed in lymph node and/or spleen, in particular in the cells of lymph node and/or spleen described above.
  • the peptide and protein antigens suitable for use according to the disclosure typically include a peptide or protein comprising an epitope of SARS-CoV-2 S protein or a functional variant thereof for inducing an immune response.
  • the peptide or protein or epitope may be derived from a target antigen, i.e. the antigen against which an immune response is to be elicited.
  • the peptide or protein antigen or the epitope contained within the peptide or protein antigen may be a target antigen or a fragment or variant of a target antigen.
  • the target antigen may be a coronavirus S protein, in particular SARS-CoV-2 S protein.
  • the antigen molecule or a procession product thereof may bind to an antigen receptor such as a BCR or TCR carried by immune effector cells, or to antibodies.
  • a peptide and protein antigen which is provided to a subject according to the invention by administering RNA encoding the peptide and protein antigen, i.e., a vaccine antigen preferably results in the induction of an immune response, e.g., a humoral and/or cellular immune response in the subject being provided the peptide or protein antigen.
  • Said immune response is preferably directed against a target antigen, in particular coronavirus S protein, in particular SARS-CoV-2 S protein.
  • a vaccine antigen may comprise the target antigen, a variant thereof, or a fragment thereof. In one embodiment, such fragment or variant is immunologically equivalent to the target antigen.
  • fragment of an antigen or “variant of an antigen” means an agent which results in the induction of an immune response which immune response targets the antigen, i.e. a target antigen.
  • the vaccine antigen may correspond to or may comprise the target antigen, may correspond to or may comprise a fragment of the target antigen or may correspond to or may comprise an antigen which is homologous to the target antigen or a fragment thereof.
  • a vaccine antigen may comprise an immunogenic fragment of a target antigen or an amino acid sequence being homologous to an immunogenic fragment of a target antigen.
  • An "immunogenic fragment of an antigen” according to the disclosure preferably relates to a fragment of an antigen which is capable of inducing an immune response against the target antigen.
  • the vaccine antigen may be a recombinant antigen.
  • immunologically equivalent means that the immunologically equivalent molecule such as the immunologically equivalent amino acid sequence exhibits the same or essentially the same immunological properties and/or exerts the same or essentially the same immunological effects, e.g., with respect to the type of the immunological effect.
  • immunologically equivalent is preferably used with respect to the immunological effects or properties of antigens or antigen variants used for immunization.
  • an amino acid sequence is immunologically equivalent to a reference amino acid sequence if said amino acid sequence when exposed to the immune system of a subject induces an immune reaction having a specificity of reacting with the reference amino acid sequence.
  • Activation refers to the state of an immune effector cell such as T cell that has been sufficiently stimulated to induce detectable cellular proliferation. Activation can also be associated with initiation of signaling pathways, induced cytokine production, and detectable effector functions.
  • activated immune effector cells refers to, among other things, immune effector cells that are undergoing cell division.
  • primary refers to a process wherein an immune effector cell such as a T cell has its first contact with its specific antigen and causes differentiation into effector cells such as effector T cells.
  • clonal expansion refers to a process wherein a specific entity is multiplied.
  • the term is preferably used in the context of an immunological response in which immune effector cells are stimulated by an antigen, proliferate, and the specific immune effector cell recognizing said antigen is amplified.
  • clonal expansion leads to differentiation of the immune effector cells.
  • an antigen relates to an agent comprising an epitope against which an immune response can be generated.
  • the term “antigen” includes, in particular, proteins and peptides.
  • an antigen is presented by cells of the immune system such as antigen presenting cells like dendritic cells or macrophages.
  • An antigen or a procession product thereof such as a T-cell epitope is in one embodiment bound by a T- or B-cell receptor, or by an immunoglobulin molecule such as an antibody. Accordingly, an antigen or a procession product thereof may react specifically with antibodies or T lymphocytes (T cells).
  • an antigen is a viral antigen, such as a coronavirus S protein, e.g., SARS-CoV-2 S protein, and an epitope is derived from such antigen.
  • viral antigen refers to any viral component having antigenic properties, i.e. being able to provoke an immune response in an individual.
  • the viral antigen may be coronavirus S protein, e.g., SARS-CoV-2 S protein.
  • the term "expressed on the cell surface” or "associated with the cell surface” means that a molecule such as an antigen is associated with and located at the plasma membrane of a cell, wherein at least a part of the molecule faces the extracellular space of said cell and is accessible from the outside of said cell, e.g., by antibodies located outside the cell.
  • a part is preferably at least 4, preferably at least 8, preferably at least 12, more preferably at least 20 amino acids.
  • the association may be direct or indirect.
  • the association may be by one or more transmembrane domains, one or more lipid anchors, or by the interaction with any other protein, lipid, saccharide, or other structure that can be found on the outer leaflet of the plasma membrane of a cell.
  • a molecule associated with the surface of a cell may be a transmembrane protein having an extracellular portion or may be a protein associated with the surface of a cell by interacting with another protein that is a transmembrane protein.
  • Cell surface or “surface of a cell” is used in accordance with its normal meaning in the art, and thus includes the outside of the cell which is accessible to binding by proteins and other molecules.
  • An antigen is expressed on the surface of cells if it is located at the surface of said cells and is accessible to binding by e.g. antigen-specific antibodies added to the cells.
  • extracellular portion or “exodomain” in the context of the present invention refers to a part of a molecule such as a protein that is facing the extracellular space of a cell and preferably is accessible from the outside of said cell, e.g., by binding molecules such as antibodies located outside the cell.
  • the term refers to one or more extracellular loops or domains or a fragment thereof.
  • epitope refers to a part or fragment of a molecule such as an antigen that is recognized by the immune system.
  • the epitope may be recognized by T cells, B cells or antibodies.
  • An epitope of an antigen may include a continuous or discontinuous portion of the antigen and may be between about 5 and about 100, such as between about 5 and about 50, more preferably between about 8 and about 30, most preferably between about 8 and about 25 amino acids in length, for example, the epitope may be preferably 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, or 25 amino acids in length. In one embodiment, an epitope is between about 10 and about 25 amino acids in length.
  • epitope includes T cell epitopes.
  • T cell epitope refers to a part or fragment of a protein that is recognized by a T cell when presented in the context of MHC molecules.
  • major histocompatibility complex and the abbreviation " MHC” includes MHC class I and MHC class II molecules and relates to a complex of genes which is present in all vertebrates. MHC proteins or molecules are important for signaling between lymphocytes and antigen presenting cells or diseased cells in immune reactions, wherein the MHC proteins or molecules bind peptide epitopes and present them for recognition by T cell receptors on T cells.
  • the proteins encoded by the MHC are expressed on the surface of cells, and display both self-antigens (peptide fragments from the cell itself) and non-self-antigens (e.g., fragments of invading microorganisms) to a T cell.
  • the binding peptides are typically about 8 to about 10 amino acids long although longer or shorter peptides may be effective.
  • the binding peptides are typically about 10 to about 25 amino acids long and are in particular about 13 to about 18 amino acids long, whereas longer and shorter peptides may be effective.
  • the peptide and protein antigen can be 2-100 amino acids, including for example, 5 amino acids, 10 amino acids, 15 amino acids, 20 amino acids, 25 amino acids, 30 amino acids, 35 am