IITRI awarded biological surety support contract for Plague Vaccine Program

The Medical Countermeasure Systems Joint Acquisition Vaccine Program Biological Surety Agents and Toxins program announced on March 18 that it awarded IIT Research Institute a $4 million contract to maintain a biological surety program.

The biological surety program will be compliant with Department of Defense Biological Select Agents and Toxins to support the JAVP. IITRI's maintenance will include training, medical evaluations, BSAT inventory, badging, audits, security equipment maintenance, emergency response drills and annual assessments, according to Global Biodefense.

The services will support the Plague Vaccine Program, which works to prevent aerosolized exposure of pneumonic plague to Yersinia pestis. The bacteria is a causative agent of the plague. The program is working to research and develop a vaccine for the pneumonic plague, Global Biodefense reports.

IITRI also acquired a separate contract with the government to develop and test Y. Pestis assays. The institute has the only facility with the validated assays required to support development of a Y. Pestis vaccine, according to Global Biodefense.

IITRI was founded in 1936 and provides pre-clinical toxicology, efficacy and evaluation services to pharmaceutical, biotech, veterinary, agrichemical and nutraceutical industries. The company works to be a full-service provider of basic research for government agencies and academic researchers.

Core components of the company's work includes molecular diagnostics, agent evaluation, cancer drug development, applied microbiology and analytical chemistry.