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Institute for Research in Biomedicine
Istituto di Ricerca in Biomedicina

Via Vincenzo Vela 6 - CH-6500 Bellinzona
Tel. +41 91 820 0300 - Fax +41 91 820 0302 - info [at] irb [dot] usi [dot] ch

EU invests €30 million to boost vaccine research, the IRB is one of the 42 grantees

on Thursday, September 29, 2011

On 1 October 2011 the collaborative research programme – Advanced Immunization Technologies (ADITEC) - will start in order to accelerate the development of novel and powerful immunization technologies for the next generation of human vaccines.  ADITEC is co-funded with €30M by the European Commission to establish a robust platform for innovation in this key strategic area with a high socio-economic impact. Scientists from 42 research partners in 13 countries will collaborate in this new programme.

Three groups from the IRB are among the 42 research partners involved in the ADITEC project. Using the high-throughput technologies, developed at the IRB, the groups of Prof. Lanzavecchia and Dr.Sallusto will identify the key mechanisms of the memory T-cell and B-cell responses involved in immune protection. Complementarily, the group of Dr. Uguccioni will study the expression and activity of key molecules (such as chemokines, cytokines and their receptors) which orchestrate the cell migration at mucosal sites. These combined researches will contribute to elucidate the mechanisms involved in mucosal immunity with the final aim of designing new immunization strategies.

“We are at a unique point in vaccine history,” says Rino Rappuoli, coordinator of ADITEC and president of the Sclavo Vaccines Association (SVA) which is based in Siena /Italy. “Progress in science and technology makes it possible to achieve what was previously deemed impossible. New technologies are opening the door to fight those diseases for which new vaccines could not be developed so far. However, a single laboratory cannot tackle modern vaccine science in isolation. Therefore we have set up this project consortium with scientists from 42 research bodies to collaboratively produce the knowledge necessary for the development of novel and powerful immunization technologies for the next generation of human vaccines.”

ADITEC comprises a team of competitive European universities and research institutions next to top US groups on systems biology and adjuvants. The project is reinforced by a number of key European industries, both big pharmaceutical and smaller biotechnology companies -these corporations are focusing on specific innovative technologies that now allow making better and safer vaccines-. In addition, the World Health Organization is supporting the project as a senior partner, ensuring that cross-cutting global health aspects are duly considered.

From basic research to public health

This research programme covers a wide range of crucial aspects of vaccination; from basic research or new technologies to clinical trials and public health. The high impact project will therefore lead to: improved potency and safety of vaccines and their components, novel routes and devices of administration, optimized vaccination strategies, optimized formulations and vaccination methods for different age groups, better insight in the effects of gender, chronic diseases and genetic variation on vaccination and widespread knowledge about the available new technologies.

Details of ADITEC project

Start date: 01/10/2011
End date: 30/09/2016
Project cost: €41 million
EU contribution: €30 million
Coordinator: Rino Rappuoli & Donata Medaglini, Sclavo Vaccines Association (SVA), Siena (Italy), email: info [at] associazionesclavo [dot] org, Tel: + 39-0577-233307


Sclavo Vaccines Association, Italy

Statens Serum Institut, Denmark

St George University of London, United Kingdom

Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology, Germany

University of Siena, Italy

Institute Pasteur, France

University of Oxford, United Kingdom

University of Geneva, Switzerland

Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics s.r.l., Italy

Intercell, Austria

University of Gothenburg, Sweden

Leiden University and Medical Centre, The Netherlands

Emory University Atlanta, USA

Tuberculosis Vaccine Initiative, The Netherlands

Institute for Biomedical Aging Research of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Austria

Infectious Disease Research Institute Seattle, USA

Utrecht University, The Netherlands

Fondazione Humanitas per la Ricerca, Italy

Fondazione per l’Istituto di Ricerca in Biomedicina, Switzerland

Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Italy

Kings College London, United Kingdom

World Health Organization, Switzerland

French Atomic Energy, France

Institut de Biologie et Chimie des Protéines, France

Erasmus Medical Center, The Netherlands

ALTA s.r.l.u, Italy

Medicine in need, France

deCODE Genetics, Iceland

Okairos, Italy

Sigmoid Pharma, Ireland

Vaccibody, Norway

Pevion Biotech, Switzerland

Duotol AB, Sweden

Crossbeta Biosciences, The Netherlands

Microbiotecsrl, Italy

ArenaVax, Switzerland

Xbrane Bioscience AB, Sweden

Bioneedle Group, The Netherlands

Novartis Vaccines Institute for Global Health s.r.l, Italy

National Institute for Biological Standards and Control, United Kingdom

Seattle Biomedical Research Institute, USA

Imperial College London, UK