Non-Profit Aeras & China National Biotech To Collaborate On TB Vaccine
Aeras and the China National Biotech Group (CNBG) announced a collaboration to jointly develop tuberculosis vaccines in China and potentially other parts of the world.
AsianScientist (Aug. 1, 2011) - Aeras and the China National Biotech Group (CNBG) announced last week the signing of a memorandum of understanding to jointly develop tuberculosis (TB) vaccines in China and potentially other parts of the world.
The partnership is intended to leverage both organizations’ capabilities to support the development of TB vaccines. With more than one million new TB cases every year, TB is now a major public health priority in China.
The scope of potential activities will cover the full spectrum of product development, including pre-clinical development, process development and manufacturing, and clinical development in TB and potentially other disease areas. Details of the specific activities and areas of focus of the collaboration will be set forth in a future definitive agreement.
CNBG is a state-owned enterprise belonging to China’s National Pharmaceutical Corporation (Sinopharm). It maintains one of the broadest portfolios of vaccine products globally and an 80 percent share of the public sector in China. In 2010, the annual output of CNBG reached 730 million doses.
“At CNBG, we recognize the urgent need to combat tuberculosis and other infectious diseases in both China and around the world,” said Xiaoming Yang, President of CNBG.
“This new collaboration will bring more opportunities to both organizations in pursuing greater innovation and building increased technical capacity for vaccine development.”
Aeras is a non-profit product development organization dedicated to the development of effective TB vaccines and biologics. Aeras has invented or supported the development of six TB vaccine candidates to date, five of which are currently undergoing Phase I and Phase II clinical testing in Africa, Asia, and North America. Based in Rockville, Maryland, Aeras receives funding from private foundations and governments.
“The synergy created by bringing together CNBG’s considerable infrastructure and manufacturing expertise with Aeras’ promising TB vaccine pipeline, as well as our clinical and technical expertise, will significantly enhance the likelihood of a new TB vaccine being developed quickly and efficiently,” said Jim Connolly, President & Chief Executive Officer of Aeras.
The global TB epidemic is responsible for the deaths of 1.7 million people annually. Co-infection with HIV/AIDS and the spread of drug-resistant forms of TB make it difficult to diagnose and treat, especially in poor and marginalized communities. New tools to prevent TB, including vaccines, are urgently needed.
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