HPA receives $6.5M contract from U.S. for anthrax vaccine

The U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases awarded the U.K. Health Protection Agency a $6.5 million contract on Tuesday to develop a next generation anthrax vaccine.

The contract will allow the HPA to develop the vaccine at its facilities in Porton, Wiltshire, United Kingdom, and could be worth up to $24 million if all the milestones of the project are met. The project will unite the HPA's anthrax vaccine antigen expertise with the adjuvant technology of NanoBio Corporation.

"We are delighted to achieve this award which is recognition of our world leading status in the field of anthrax vaccine research and development - we already manufacture anthrax vaccine for the U.K. and our expertise in this area is essential for the success of this program," Roger Hinton, the principal investigator of the project, said.

The funding will help the HPA to compete with other organizations that are developing similar vaccines.

"The HPA has a long track record of success in the development of vaccines and therapeutics and this multi-million dollar award is further evidence of the important role we can play in helping our partners worldwide in the key development of future biological products," Howard Tranter, HPA's business development manager, said.

The HPA is an independent U.K. organization set up by the government in 2003 to protect the public from environmental hazards and infectious diseases.