Translational Health Science And Technology Institute (THSTI), an autonomous institute of the Department of Biotechnology, has now been recognised by CEPI as one of the Global network of Laboratories for centralised assessment of COVID 19 Vaccines.
- The CEPI network will initially involve six labs, one each in Canada, Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Bangladesh and India.
- Under the CEPI Global network the Laboratory will use the same reagents and follow a common set of protocols to measure the immune response of multiple vaccine candidates under development and trial.
- This will greatly harmonise the Vaccine trial process and allow different vaccine candidates to be compared and speed up the selection of the most effective candidate.
About ‘Ind-CEPI Mission’
- The Ind-CEPI mission for establishment of BSL-3 facility, is a translational laboratory for platform technologies and a Bioassay laboratory for development of assays to measure clinical immunogenicity. The mandate of the bioassay laboratory at THSTI is to provide validated assays for vaccine development on par with global standards.
- The Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology, and Government of India has been implementing the IndCEPI mission ‘India Centric Epidemic Preparedness through Rapid Vaccine Development: Supporting Indian Vaccine Development’.
- The objectives of this mission are aligned with the Global Initiative of Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness for Innovation (CEPI) and aims to strengthen the development of vaccines and associated competencies/technologies for the diseases of epidemic potential in India.
- The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) is a foundation that takes donations from public, private, philanthropic, and civil society organisations, to finance independent research projects to develop vaccines against emerging infectious diseases (EID).
- CEPI investment also requires “equitable access” to the vaccines during outbreaks.
- CEPI was conceived in 2015 and formally launched in 2017 at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland.
- It was co-founded and co-funded with US$460 million from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, The Wellcome Trust, and a consortium of nations, being Norway, Japan, Germany; to which the European Union (2019) and Britain (2020) subsequently joined.
- CEPI is headquartered in Oslo, Norway.
- In 2020, CEPI was identified by several media outlets as a “key player in the race to develop a vaccine” for coronavirus disease 2019.