WRAIR and its new Emerging Infectious Diseases Branch bring critical subject matter expertise, operational platforms and research and development capabilities to counter the threat of rapidly surfacing deadly infectious diseases.
Based upon its long experience developing viral vaccines and recent work on coronaviruses specifically, EIDB was able to move quickly to advance a vaccine candidate against COVID-19. The platform selected for this vaccine, called Spike Ferritin Nanoparticle, or SpFN, is designed so it may be easily adapted to combat other known and future coronaviruses.
WRAIR builds upon established medical research programs in countries where emerging infectious disease threats are most pressing. Researchers in the branch work with host nation partners to identify emerging pathogens and develop and test products most relevant in these endemic areas.
EIDB continues to reinforce and expand international partnerships, as evidenced by two flagship programs, the Joint West Africa Research Group (JWARG) and the Partnership for Research in the Middle East (PRIME). These programs highlight WRAIR’s development of a resilient network of laboratories, clinics and staff capable of anticipating and responding to disease outbreaks across a wide footprint.