BARDA cancels procurement of rPA vaccines

The Office of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority has announced that its Request for Proposal for the procurement of rPA vaccines has been canceled.

The Request for Proposal was canceled in favor of a Broad Agency Announcement for rPA vaccine development. Office of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority officials said that this action was taken following a technical evaluation panel determination that none of the submitted proposals from vaccine developers would meet the Project BioShield statutory requirement of having a product ready for licensure within eight years.

Project BioShield was signed into law on July 21, 2004, to serve as a broad strategy to defend America against the threat of weapons of mass destruction in all forms, including funding for needed countermeasures, facilitating research and development and facilitating the use of medical countermeasures in an emergency.

BARDA also announced that rather than re-issuing an request for proposal, it will instead request that existing anthrax "vaccine developers submit product development plans under special instructions to an existing broad agency announcement that supports the development of medical countermeasures for chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats." Dr. Robin Robinson, BARDA Director, said in a press release, "We believe the broad agency announcement and the flexibilities it provides are well adapted to the further development of these products. Anthrax preparedness remains one of our highest priorities so we will continue to address this threat using all of the authorities and resources at our disposal."