Global Health Innovative Technology (GHIT) Fund

Program Objectives

Established in 2013, Global Health Innovative Technology (GHIT) is a Japanese-led initiative aiming to discover and advance the development of new health technologies such as drugs, vaccines and diagnostic for low-and middle-income countries.

Kiyoshi Kurokawa & BT Slingsby, GHIT; Masafumi Nogimori, Astellas; Joji Nakayama, Daiichi Sankyo; Trevor Mundel, Gates; Haruo Naito, Eisai; Isao Teshirogi, Shionogi; Yasuchika Hasegawa, Takeda; Shinichi Iida & Kazushi Yamauchi, Japanese Ministries Kiyoshi Kurokawa & BT Slingsby, GHIT; Masafumi Nogimori, Astellas; Joji Nakayama, Daiichi Sankyo; Trevor Mundel, Gates; Haruo Naito, Eisai; Isao Teshirogi, Shionogi; Yasuchika Hasegawa, Takeda; Shinichi Iida & Kazushi Yamauchi, Japanese Ministries Copyright Eisai

What are the health needs and challenges?

Globalization and the unprecedented speed of cross-border infection in the 21st century has created the need for a global health strategy. Awareness of common global threats to the health of citizens has increased, and governments understand the need to work together to counteract these threats. Since 2000, the global community has focused on three of the biggest threats to human health – HIV, tuberculosis and malaria. 

Description of the program

The GHIT Fund was established by three key partners: the Government of Japan, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and five Japanese leading pharmaceutical companies: Astellas Pharma, Daiichi Sankyo, Eisai, Shionogi, and Takeda Pharmaceutical. In 2016, there are now 12 full partners.

As the world’s first public-private partnership, GHIT Fund has facilitated research and development for neglected diseases, such as malaria, tuberculosis and NTDs. As antimicrobial resistance is also now a serious global health threat, GHIT supports 29 AMR related projects. The combination of Japan’s government and its drug industry—the third largest in the world—brings Japan’s technology, innovation and insights to the development of drugs, vaccines and diagnostics for the developing world.

In 2016, GHIT Fund announced it was investing in a vaccine that could block the transmission of two species of malaria and a rapid fire test that can reveal a malaria infection in a matter of minutes.  It is also investing in the development of a new diagnostic test for tuberculosis (TB) by Fujifilm Corporation and Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics, which can diagnose TB in HIV-positive patients.

In 2015 the GHIT Fund, its members Eisai, Shionogi and Takeda Pharmaceutical, along with partners the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) and AstraZeneca began a ground-breaking initiative to accelerate and cut the cost of early stage drug discovery for two of the world’s most neglected diseases, leishmaniasis and Chagas disease. 

In 2013 Astellas received a $1.86 million grant to develop and register a new pediatric formulation of the gold standard treatment drug praziquantel to combat schistosomiasis.

In June 2013, with support from the GHIT Fund, Takeda began to work with Product Development Partners (PDPs), including MMV, TB Alliance and DNDi, in a program to screen Takeda’s drug compound library for new candidate compounds that might have the potential to be developed into new drugs for the treatment of infections particularly prevalent in developing countries, such as HIV, tuberculosis, malaria and neglected tropical diseases.

GHIT has provided grants of $5.7 million to six global partnerships developing innovative drugs and vaccines against malaria, tuberculosis and Chagas disease in the first round of request for proposal (RFP) in November, 2013.  Another $12 million grants for TB and NTDs were awarded to four innovative projects in the second round of RFP in March, 2014.

Corresponding principle in the declaration

“We support new ways of working such as open collaborations between industry and public researchers to overcome the scientific challenges of creating new antibiotics and diagnostics”.

Read full Declaration by the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology and Diagnostics Industries on Combating Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR)


Global Health in Modern Japan


Partnership information

Company(ies) Astellas , Chugai , Daiichi Sankyo , Eisai , Otsuka , Shionogi , Takeda

Partner(s) Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi), Global Alliance for TB Drug Development (TB Alliance), Global Health Innovative Technology (GHIT) Fund, Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV), Shionogi, UNDP

Type of Partner(s) IGOs, NGOs, Other Business, PDPs

Therapeutic Focus Neglected Tropical Diseases, Infectious Diseases

Disease(s) Chagas Disease, Dengue, Drug-Resistant Infections (AMR), HIV/AIDS, Malaria, Tuberculosis

Program Type(s) Availability of Treatment - Financial Support, Prevention Programs - Mass Drug Administrations (MDA), Prevention Programs - Vaccines, Research & Development - Development of Treatments, Research & Development - Innovative Funding Mechanisms, Research & Development - Operations Research, Research & Development - Pediatric R&D

Targeted Population(s) Children, Men, Mothers, Patients in needs of treatment, People with low income, Women, Youth

Region(s) East Asia & Pacific

Number of Countries 1

Country(ies) Japan

Research Country(ies) Japan

Start Date 2013

More information GHIT Fund

Anticipated completion date Ongoing

« In the long-term, people suffering from disease will be able to overcome their diseases and engage in economic activities, contributing to national income and national wealth and eventually creating a large middle-income class. »

Haruo Naito, President and CEO of Eisai