CIDRAP unveils road map to next-generation COVID-19 vaccines: 3 notes

The University of Minnesota's Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy in Minneapolis published a road map to guide the development of COVID-19 vaccines that offer broad protection against emerging variants and other coronaviruses that may pose a threat in the future. 

"The COVID-19 pandemic taught us the hard lesson that we must be better prepared," Michael Osterholm, PhD, director of CIDRAP, said in a Feb. 21 news release. "We must act now to develop better, longer lasting and more broadly protective vaccines. If we wait for the next event to happen before we act, we will be too late." 

Three notes: 

  1. The Coronavirus Vaccines R&D Roadmap was developed with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and The Rockefeller Foundation and involved collaboration from 50 global experts. It is meant as a "strategic planning tool to facilitate R&D, coordinate funding and promote stakeholder engagement." 

  1. The road map outlines several structures to the development of broadly protective coronavirus vaccines. It addresses key barriers and gaps to their development and specific milestones for advancement. For example, it lists determining whether new ways to deliver vaccines can enhance protection as a strategic goal. "By 2027, further clarify, through clinical studies, if alternative routes of administration, including intranasal, transdermal, inhaled, and oral vaccines, can enhance mucosal immunity and protect against disease and transmission," the road map says in reference to a high-priority milestone. 

  1. The document is also focused on ensuring next-generation vaccines are accessible to all regions, especially in remote areas and low- and middle-income countries. 

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