IVI in the Media
IVI and SK Chemicals Receive Funding to Advance Development of a New Typhoid Vaccine
IVI and SK Chemicals Receive Funding
to Advance Development of a New Typhoid Vaccine
- IVI partnering with SK Chemicals on vaccine research and development
- 4.9 million USD grant from Gates Foundation to support typhoid vaccine early clinical trials
SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA – The International Vaccine Institute (IVI) announced today that grant funding of 4.9 million USD was received from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to support clinical research and development of a new typhoid fever vaccine in collaboration with SK Chemicals. The grant is effective from December 2014 to September 2017.
“We are very grateful for this grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to enable us to take the first step toward the goal of collaboration between IVI and SK Chemicals.” said Mr. In-serk Lee, President of SK Chemicals. “Through collaboration, we believe that the strengths and expertise of IVI and SK Chemicals can be maximized to accomplish our goal of developing the typhoid vaccine on schedule.”
Typhoid fever is a systemic illness that is a public health problem among impoverished populations in developing countries. Spread by ingesting contaminated food or water, typhoid is found in settings where sanitation, hygiene, and clean water are limited. It is estimated to cause 160,000 to 170,000 deaths and 16 to 22 million cases annually. While vaccines and treatment for typhoid are available, current vaccines cannot protect children below two years of age, an age group considered more vulnerable to typhoid; and antibiotic treatments are becoming less effective and more costly due to increasing rates of antibiotic-resistant strains of typhoid.
IVI developed a new typhoid vaccine based on conjugation of the bacterial Vi polysaccharide antigen, conjugated to diphtheria toxoid (DT). Compared with current typhoid vaccines, it has the potential to protect children below two years old and to provide protection against typhoid for a longer duration of time. SK Chemicals has gained extensive technology and expertise on conjugate vaccines from its experience with the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine. By combining this with the technology transferred from IVI, SK Chemicals has successfully established the manufacturing process for the typhoid vaccine at a commercial scale.
In 2012, IVI and SK Chemicals signed a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate on clinical development of the typhoid conjugate vaccine with the intent to attain prequalification by the World Health Organization (WHO); in which SK Chemicals has agreed to supply the vaccine at an affordable price for the public health sector worldwide. It will manufacture the vaccine at its brand new vaccine manufacturing facility located in Andong City, North Gyeongsang Province. Achievement of WHO prequalification indicates that the vaccine meets international standards in quality, safety and efficacy, and enables the vaccine to be purchased by UN agencies. In 2013, IVI completed transfer of the vaccine production and quality control technology to SK Chemicals. Planning is ongoing for preclinical and phase 1 and 2 trials, which will commence in 2015.
The new grant will support early clinical trials for the typhoid conjugate vaccine. IVI will work with SK Chemicals in the development and conduct of clinical trials for vaccine licensure and eventually WHO prequalification.
“We are extremely pleased to receive funding from the Gates Foundation to support the development of the typhoid conjugate vaccine in collaboration with SK Chemicals,” said John Morahan, IVI Acting Director General, “With firm support from the foundation and a prominent, trusted partner like SK Chemicals, we are confident that we will achieve our goal of creating a safe, effective, and affordable typhoid vaccine for low-income countries.”
The International Vaccine Institute (IVI) is the world’s only international organization devoted exclusively to developing and introducing new and improved vaccines to protect the world’s poorest people, especially children in developing countries. Established in 1997, IVI operates as an independent international organization under a treaty signed by 35 countries and the World Health Organization. The Institute conducts research in more than 20 countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America on vaccines against enteric and diarrheal infections, Japanese encephalitis, and dengue fever, and develops new and improved vaccines at its headquarters in Seoul, Republic of Korea. For more information, please visit http://www.ivi.int.
About SK Chemicals
SK Chemicals is a research-focused company with a mission to provide total healthcare solutions from prevention to treatment. With a strong technological foundation and a wide range of products including vaccines, plasma products, value-added generics and novel chemical products, SK Chemicals has been expanding its horizon into the global pharmaceutical and vaccines market.
Specifically, with regard to the vaccine business, the Company has constructed a state-of-the-art vaccine manufacturing facility in Gyeongbuk Bio Complex in Andong, Republic of Korea, which is the first facility to hold a commercial-scale production process for the cell culture-based influenza vaccine in the country. SK Chemicals is also conducting the final phase of clinical studies for pneumococcal conjugate vaccine and chickenpox vaccine, as well as the shingles vaccine for global market.
Tae Kyung Byun
Public Awareness/Advocacy Officer, IVI
Phone: +82-2-872-2801 (Ext. 159)
Corporate & Public Relation/General Manager, SK Chemicals Co., Ltd.