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CEPI establishes global centralized COVID-19 vaccine candidates assessment network

08 October 2020 | News

Global group will minimise variation between individual lab analyses to enable uniform way of evaluating and identifying the most successful candidates

Photo Credit: Freepik

Photo Credit: Freepik

The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) in Norway has announced partnerships with five clinical sample testing laboratories to create a centralised global network to reliably assess and compare the immunological responses generated by COVID-19 vaccine candidates.

Located across multiple regions globally, the laboratories initially selected for this vaccine-assessment network are: Nexelis (Canada) and Public Health England (PHE, UK), VisMederi Srl (Italy), Viroclinics-DDL (The Netherlands), icddr,b (formerly International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh), and Translational Health Sciences and Technological Institute (THSTI, India).

The network will use the same testing reagents—originating in the labs of Nexelis and PHE—and follow common protocols to measure the immunogenicity of multiple COVID-19 vaccine candidates (both CEPI-funded and non-CEPI funded developers). This approach will ensure uniformity in assessment and informed identification of the most promising vaccine candidates. CEPI is actively negotiating with additional laboratories to participate in this network.

In order to monitor interest and adjust the testing capacity, CEPI is requesting all COVID-19 vaccine developers interested in using CEPI’s centralised laboratory network complete this short survey.

COVID-19 vaccine developer ready to submit their samples to the network can apply at; Sample Analysis Request Form.

Over 320 vaccine candidates against COVID-19 are currently in development, there are likely to be numerous differences in data collection and evaluation methods. This includes potential variation in the range of correlates of immunity being measured by laboratories. Through centralising the analysis of samples obtained from trials of COVID-19 vaccine candidates, the new clinical-sample-testing network will minimise variation in results obtained, which could otherwise arise due to technical differences when carrying out independent analysis.

Through this new network, up to the limit of programme funding, eligible COVID-19 vaccine developers (both CEPI-funded and non-CEPI funded developers) can use the laboratories, without per sample charges, to analyse the immune response elicited by their COVID-19 vaccine candidates in preclinical, Phase I and Phase IIa studies. Data obtained on the immunogenicity of CEPI-funded vaccine candidates will be used to inform and advance CEPI’s COVID-19 vaccine portfolio by providing quick and accurate evaluation of its candidate vaccines.

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