According to news sources, a national team of experts is working on an innovative biopolymer particle-based platform technology to develop vaccine candidates against biological warfare threats. This collaborative effort, led by Griffith University in Australia, involves Health Security Systems Australia (HSSA), the Australian Rickettsial Reference Laboratory, the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries, the University of Western Australia, and industry partner BioCina Pty Ltd.
The project has received two years of funding with the aim of establishing a sovereign capability in Australia to rapidly develop and manufacture vaccines against biological threats and emerging infectious diseases on an industrial scale. The funding was provided through Defense’s Next Generation Technologies Fund as part of a national call for HSSA collaborative proposals.
The technology being developed at Griffith University utilizes engineered bacterial cells to assemble biopolymer particles coated with an immunogenic antigen. This platform approach allows for rapid vaccine design and manufacturing, overcoming critical obstacles faced by existing vaccine technologies in terms of response speed, manufacturing capacity, functionality, and stability.
Professor Bernd Rehm, Director of the Cell and Biopolymer Factory Center at Griffith University’s Institute for Drug Discovery, emphasizes the importance of this project in addressing the need for protection against biological warfare threats and infectious diseases in Australia. Currently, there are no approved vaccines for melioidosis and tularemia, while only one approved vaccine exists for Q fever. The collaboration between experts involved in this project opens up possibilities for developing innovative vaccine candidates that could potentially be manufactured.
BioCina CEO Mark W. Womack expresses his honor at being chosen as the manufacturing partner for this project. The aim is to deliver greater sovereign health protection in Australia through this innovative technology.
Dr Felicia Pradera, CEO of HSSA, highlights how this new vaccine platform technology aligns with their medical countermeasures portfolio. It offers high efficacy and safety against biological warfare agents while overcoming current limitations such as stability and cold chain dependence. The technology also enables a rapid response process against emerging threats, thus ensuring Australia’s health security.
The importance of medical countermeasures in defense investment and the recognition of health security as a key component of national security are emphasized by Dr. Pradera.
Thus, the collaboration between HSSA, Griffith University, and other scientific experts aims to develop an innovative biopolymer particle-based platform technology for vaccine development against biological warfare threats. This project not only addresses the need for protection against infectious diseases but also contributes to Australia’s sovereign capability in rapidly manufacturing vaccines on an industrial scale. With this new technology, there is hope for effective protection against biological threats and emerging infectious diseases in the future.
Source: (Griffith University News)(https://news.griffith.edu.au/2023/10/03/innovative-biopolymer-particle-based-platform-technology-to-develop-vaccine-candidates/)