Vaccine Discovery Partnership (VxDP)

Partnership objective

To accelerate research into vaccines for global health needs, through a partnership between GSK and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The project will focus initially on the adjuvant which is used in GSK’s RTS,S malaria vaccine candidate, currently in late-stage development in partnership with the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative. The project will focus initially on the adjuvant which is used in GSK’s RTS,S malaria vaccine candidate, currently in late-stage development in partnership with the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative. Copyright GSK

What are the health needs and challenges?

Despite significant progress over the last decade, over 22 million children in developing nations remain without access to life-saving vaccines.

Most vaccines must be kept cold and transported under constant refrigeration via a so-called ‘cold chain’ which is a significant challenge in hot, remote and resource-limited regions. Reducing dependence on the cold chain is a key approach to support the effective and affordable delivery of vaccines for global health.

The health need and challenge is to make vaccines more resistant to heat, thus reducing the need for refrigeration. 

Description of partnership activities and how they address needs and challenges

The partnership look to conduct early stage research into vaccine thermostability to make vaccines more resistant to heat. This will reduce dependence on the cold chain, which is a key approach to support the effective and affordable delivery of vaccines for global health.

The project will focus initially on the adjuvant which is used in GSK’s RTS,S malaria vaccine candidate, currently in late-stage development in partnership with the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative. RTS,S has been designed for use in infants and children from sub-Saharan Africa, where maintaining vaccines at an optimum temperature can be challenging. Developing a method of making the adjuvant more heat stable could bring a significant public health benefit.

The results could also have broader applications for other vaccines containing this adjuvant, including vaccines in development by GSK against HIV and tuberculosis.

Partnership information

Company(ies) GlaxoSmithKline

Partner(s) Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Type of Partner(s) NGOs

Therapeutic Focus Infectious Diseases

Disease(s) HIV/AIDS, Malaria, Tuberculosis

Program Type(s) Availability of Treatment - Patient Safety & Medicines Quality, Prevention Programs - Vaccines, Research & Development - Development of Treatments, Research & Development - Operations Research, Research & Development - Pediatric R&D

Targeted Population(s) Children, People with low income

Region(s) East Asia & Pacific, Latin America & Caribbean, Middle East & North Africa, South Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa

Number of Countries 107

Country(ies) Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Argentina, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, French Guiana, Gabon, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lao PDR, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Syria, Tanzania, Thailand, The Gambia, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Uganda, Uruguay, Venezuela, Vietnam, West Bank and Gaza, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Start Date 2013

More information GSK Press Release

Anticipated completion date Ongoing

« This partnership is the starting point for research into an exciting area of biomedical technology that has the potential to overcome a significant and long-standing barrier to vaccine access in developing countries. »

Emmanuel Hanon, Senior Vice President, Vaccine Discovery and Development, GSK