SEATTLE, WA (July 20, 2022) – HDT Bio Corp., a developer of immunotherapies for oncology and infectious diseases, announced today it has been awarded a nearly $1.5M Phase 2 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of the National Institutes of Health to expand research on developing RNA vaccines and therapeutics for prevention and treatment of enterovirus D68 (EV-D68), which causes acute flaccid myelitis (AFM), a severe neurological condition that affects mostly young children and infants.

HDT previously was awarded a Phase 1 SBIR grant for development of an RNA vaccine for EV- D68. The Phase 2 funding will enable the company to expand its preclinical research to include development of potential therapeutics to treat the infections.

EV-D68 is a respiratory virus that affects infants, children and teenagers, causing mild to severe symptoms, including difficulty breathing. However, the virus also can cause acute flaccid myelitis, a severe neurological condition that can result in muscle weakness and permanent paralysis. Although EV-D68 previously has been considered rare, outbreaks continue to occur and have become increasingly associated with an alarming surge of AFM cases across the U.S. No vaccines or therapeutics exist for EV-D68 infections.

“We are very appreciative and pleased to partner with NIAID on trying to find solutions to this emerging threat,” said HDT Bio CEO Steve Reed.

 In the Phase 1 research, HDT Bio developed RNA vaccines against six strains of EV-D68 and isolated from immunized animals novel single-domain antibodies that neutralize the virus. With the Phase 2 grant, the company plans to develop formulations of the antibodies or RNA encoded versions of them for treatment of EV-D68 infections as well as enhance RNA-mediated expression of antibodies to prevent the illness.


HDT Bio is a Seattle-based clinical-stage biopharmaceutical development company. With core technology and expertise in nucleic acid formulation, the company develops products that seek to harness host-directed immune responses. HDT’s work focuses on oncological and infectious disease applications through early-stage collaborations with partners worldwide. HDT Bio’s founders are world leaders in the development of immune stimulants, including both therapeutics and therapy-enhancing adjuvants. The company’s vaccine platform, repRNA/LION™, combines formulation and adjuvant ingredients to stabilize and deliver self-amplifying RNA to the immune system to stimulate responses.

This project has been funded in whole or in part with Federal funds from the NIAID, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, under Contract No. 75N93022C00017.