DoD chooses Bavarian Nordic to develop bioterror vaccines
The DoD's Defense Threat Reduction Agency picked the MVA-BN vaccine platform to develop a vaccine against Burkholderia pseudomallei and Burkholderia mallei, pathogens that cause melioidosis and glanders, respectively. There is significant interest to develop new vaccines able to protect against these pathogens because of potential biothreat applications, public health implications and suboptimal clinical outcomes.
"The award of this contract illustrates the strength of our MVA-BN vaccine platform technology, which has been developed through a decade-long partnership with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services," Anders Hedegaard, the president and CEO of Bavarian Nordic, said. "As part of our strategy to expand our biodefense business beyond smallpox, we are pleased to add DTRA to our list of government partners with whom we work to develop novel biodefense vaccines."
The DTRA will pay Bavarian Nordic $500,000 to design, generate and test MVA-BN-based recombinant vaccines against Burkholderia. The DTRA may support further development of the vaccine through a larger contract award if the contract yields a successful proof of concept.
Bavarian Nordic said the MVA-BN vaccine platform is robust and adaptable for many kinds of infectious diseases. More than 7,300 individuals have been vaccinated with MVA-BN-based vaccines.
The DTRA is the fourth government agency to collaborate with Bavarian Nordic on the development of novel biodefense vaccines. Ongoing collaborations include the development of vaccines against foot-and-mouth disease, smallpox and filoviruses like Marburg and Ebola.