WRAIR was a pioneer in early testing of Ebola vaccine candidates, utilizing its established network of HIV study clinical study sites in Africa to pivot towards Ebola countermeasures.
In 2014, WRAIR accelerated the advancement of the rVSV-ZEBOV Ebola vaccine candidate in a first-in-human Phase I clinical trial within just 11 weeks in the midst of the West Africa outbreak. The findings from this trial executed at the WRAIR in Silver Spring, Maryland selected the vaccine dose that was used for the field efficacy study in Guinea. The vaccine, Ervebo, became the first FDA-approved vaccine for the prevention of Ebola virus disease (EVD), caused by Zaire ebolavirus.
In 2019, WRAIR's partner site in Uganda, MUWRP, began clinical studies using an Ebola Sudan vaccine developed by the NIH Vaccine Research Center.
To date, the WRAIR clinical trials network has completed eight clinical trials of five different investigative Ebola virus vaccine candidates, more than any single institution in the world.
Ebola Vaccine Legacy
Phase 1 study using cAd3-EBO S (Sudan) vaccine (Uganda)
Tested an Ebola Sudan vaccine developed by the NIH Vaccine Research Center
Initiated Multi-site Phase 1/2a Ebola vaccine trial (USA and Africa)
Tested Ad26.ZEBOV and MVA-BN-Filo to expand on safety and immunogenicity data and test other regimens. This study was supported by MHRP and Crucell Holland
Began Phase 2 vaccine study in Nigeria using ChAd3 vaccine (Nigeria)
First Ebola vaccine study in Nigeria testing ChAd3-EBO-Z vaccine candidate supported by GSK
Tested ChAd3 vaccine in phase I study (Uganda)
Collaboration to explore long-term antibody responses.
Conducted Phase I Clinical Testing VSV Vaccine Candidate at WRAIR (USA)
NEJM article shows vaccine safe and produced robust immune response. Informed dosing for larger clinical studies.
Conducted First Ebola Vaccine Clinical Trial in Africa (Uganda)
Phase 1 clinical trial of NIH’s early DNA vaccine candidate that informed development of next generation (ChAd3) vaccine.
During the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, WRAIR provided additional support to research and response efforts.
In 2015, WRAIR published findings in The Lancet Infectious Diseases from the largest, long-term follow up study on Ebola survivors to that date. Researchers showed long-term adverse health effects last more than two years in survivors of the 2007-2008 Bundibugyo ebolavirus (BDBV) outbreak in Uganda.
The Institute worked with DoD and NIH researchers to validate key laboratory assays that were used in clinical testing of vaccine candidates, and WRAIR labs help international partner labs confirm Ebola cases in Africa and Thailand.
Additionally, several WRAIR scientists consulted with the World Health Organization (WHO) to assist with the planning of Ebola vaccine studies in West Africa.
EIDB’s Director, Dr. Kayvon Modjarrad, helped guide WHO Ebola vaccine development policy by tracking science, building consensus among diverse stakeholders and outlining a broad scientific agenda to reach critical clinical endpoints.
Subject matter experts at WRAIR also assisted work with local ethical and regulatory authorities as they strived to expedite Ebola vaccine research trials in response to the 2014 West Africa outbreak.