Numerous government agencies involved in all-hands-on-deck effort to find COVID-19 vaccine
The National Institutes of Health and the Foundation for the NIH (FNIH) are bringing together more than a dozen leading biopharmaceutical companies, to develop an international strategy for a coordinated research response to the pandemic, ideally searching for a COVID-19 vaccine.
Included in this response effort are the Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the European Medicines Agency.
“We need to bring the full power of the biomedical research enterprise to bear on this crisis,” said NIH Director Francis S. Collins, MD, PhD. “Now is the time to come together with unassailable objectivity to swiftly advance the development of the most promising vaccine and therapeutic candidates that can help end the COVID-19 global pandemic.”
Coordinated by the FNIH, ACTIV government and industry partners will provide infrastructure, subject matter expertise and/or funding (both new and in-kind) to identify, prioritize and facilitate the entry of some of the most promising candidates into clinical trials. Industry partners also will make available certain prioritized compounds, some of which have already cleared various phases of development, and associated data to support research related to COVID-19.
“COVID-19 is the most significant global health challenge of our lifetime, and it will take all of us working together as a global community to put an end to this pandemic,” said Paul Stoffels, M.D., Vice Chairman of the Executive Committee and Chief Scientific Officer, Johnson & Johnson. “We will need to harness the best ideas from multiple stakeholders, including governments, regulatory authorities, academia, NGOs and industry to stop COVID-19. At Johnson & Johnson, we are committed to working closely with FNIH, IMI and are part of other important consortia to speed solutions to stop this pandemic.”
“Battling the COVID-19 pandemic is far too great a challenge for any one company or institution to solve alone,” said Mikael Dolsten, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer and President, Worldwide Research, Development and Medical, Pfizer. “We are seeing an unprecedented level of collaboration across the innovation ecosystem to address this global health crisis, and this potentially powerful NIH initiative may allow us to further accelerate the delivery of much-needed therapies to patients around the world.”