最近一家名为Global Health Innovative Technology Fund的基金会投资570万美元资助了6个疫苗研究项目用于研发治疗疟疾、肺结核和锥虫病的疫苗。在全球每七个人就有一个人患有这几种病中的一种。
日本大阪大学研究BK-SE36疟疾疫苗项目获得735000美元资助。日本CellFree Sciences公司的疟疾疫苗获得60万美元经费资助。而武田制药的疟疾疫苗获得了200万美元研究项目。另外Global Health Innovative Technology Fund还投入了260万美元支持肺结核疫苗研究。
Global Health Innovative Technology Fund是由武田制药在内的五家日本公司、两个政府部门以及盖茨基金会合资成立。
A new public health partnership called the Global Health Innovative Technology Fund is doling out $5.7 million in grants to 6 programs around the world to boost research and development of promising vaccines against malaria, tuberculosis and Chagas disease.
Together, these diseases affect roughly one in 7 people globally.
The Research Institute for Microbial Diseases at Japan’s Osaka University, in partnership with the Medical Center for Translational Research at Osaka University Hospital and Gulu University in Uganda, will receive $735,000 to test their newly formulated BK-SE36 malaria vaccine.
Japan’s Ehime University and Japanese biotech company CellFree Sciences, in partnership with the PATH Malaria Vaccine Inititate, have won $600,000 to identify novel targets of immunity and speed the development of malaria vaccines. One of the problems of developing a malaria vaccine is that only a small percentage of potential targets on the parasite surface have been screened for their vaccine potential. Using an innovative wheat germ cell-free protein synthesis technology they’ve developed, investigators at Ehime University will produce proteins that could be developed into antibodies to block the malaria parasite from invading liver cells.
The largest award–about $2.6 million–will go to Medicines for Malaria Venture in partnership with Takeda Pharmaceutical to study a new antimalarial compound, DSM265, to clinical proof-of-concept stage. As resistance to current malaria medicines rises, new drugs to treat the mosquito-borne disease are sorely needed. MMV and Takeda won an additional $575,000 for development and formulation of an investigational antimalarial compound, ELQ300.
The GHIT Fund will also invest $720,000 for early work on a vaccine candidate against tuberculosis being codeveloped by Japan’s National Institute of Biomedical Innovation, Japan’s Create Vaccine Co. and the nonprofit biotech Aeras, based in Rockville, MD. The experimental vaccine targets the mucous membranes to keep TB from entering the lungs. The only available TB vaccine, BCG, is not ideal because it does not provide adequate protection to teenagers and adults.
A final $510,000 has been awarded to Eisai and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard for drug discovery efforts in Chagas disease, an insect-spread illness that primarily affects poor communities in South and Central America. There are no drugs on the market that treat chronic Chagas infection, which can cause heart and digestive system disorders that often lead to death.
The GHIT Fund is a public-private partnership made up of 5 Japanese pharmaceutical companies–Astellas Pharma, Daiichi Sankyo, Shionogi & Co., Eisai and Takeda–plus two government ministries and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Launched in April this year, it has a potential 5-year commitment of more than $100 million.