CEPI funds and partners with organisations to accelerate the development of vaccines against emerging infectious diseases.
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This call for proposals invites applications for the development of innovative platform technologies that can be used to develop vaccines and other immunoprophylactics to rapidly respond to future outbreaks of emerging infectious diseases and unknown pathogens, known as “Disease X”.
Our ultimate goal is to develop the tools required to rapidly immunise at-risk populations against emerging infectious diseases, potentially resulting in public-health benefits by quickly limiting or ending outbreaks. This call builds on the original call for platform technologies launched in September, 2017.
CEPI aims to advance development of vaccine and other immunoprophylactic platform technologies that enable a rapid response to protect at-risk populations against emerging infectious diseases, including “Disease X”. CEPI plans to invest in platform technologies that can improve timelines from identification of a pathogen sequence to the development of a vaccine candidate or immunoprophylactic product. Platform technologies should enable rapid product development, rapid scale-up, and rapid induction of immunity or immunoprophylactic benefit for use in outbreaks. These can be novel platforms or existing (proven) platforms where improvements can be made in terms of increased speed, reduced costs, and manufacturing scale-up to respond to both known and unknown threat situations.
During the proposed project period, CEPI encourages vaccine developers to work towards the following aspirational targets for their platforms:
Our Call Text provides further information on our call for proposals.
This call for proposals is open until 14 October, 2020. The call may be amended or extended at that time.
Please download our Call Text which provides further information on the call.
If you would like to get a broader understanding of the call and see if your idea meets our suitability and eligibility requirements, you can arrange an optional CEPI TechTalk with the CEPI Secretariat.
Our CEPI TechTalks are video conference or face to face meetings (if located near one of our offices) up to 60 minutes in length. During the first half of the meeting, you are invited to present your technology. Feedback is provided in the second half of the meeting.
CEPI TechTalks typically take place on Thursdays and Fridays from 1200 CET.
If you would like to organise a CEPI TechTalk, please email [email protected], with the subject line ‘CEPI Tech Talk: *Name* and *Organisation*’.
In advance of the meeting please provide:
CEPI TechTalks are optional and will not affect Expression of Interest.
The process for submitting your proposal is divided into two stages:
Stage 1: Applicants submit an “Expression of Interest” form. These forms can be submitted at any time and will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
Stage 2: If an “Expression of Interest” is accepted, applicants are then invited to submit a full proposal for funding.
Download and complete the “Expression of Interest” form, which must include essential evidence outlined in the template, meet the presented timeline requirements for completion, and contain sufficient detail for review of the proposed product development process. Any claims made within the proposal must be supported by evidence.
Expression of Interest forms must be submitted via a secure portal. When ready, please email [email protected] to request a secure link to upload your completed form to the secure portal. Forms should be uploaded in PDF format. No additional documents should be submitted.
Submissions that fail to meet the eligibility criteria outlined in the “Expression of Interest” form template or that exceed the specified page limit (10 pages) will not be considered for further review.
Selected applicants will be invited to submit full proposals. Instructions for submission of full proposals will be sent directly to the applicants.
CEPI reviews and evaluates proposals on their merits and in the context of stated eligibility criteria and CEPI’s overall project portfolio. Regardless of eligibility at any stage of a funding call, CEPI reserves the right to consider and to decline proposals. Personal data included in proposals will be handled according to CEPI’s Privacy Notice on www.cepi.net/terms.
For questions related to this call for proposal or to arrange a CEPI TechTalk meeting, please contact [email protected]. We will address your questions within the shortest possible timeframe. In due course, we will also publish a document addressing “Frequently Asked Questions” to aid potential applicants.
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*EDCTP and CEPI are holding an Online Information Meeting for potential applicants to this Joint EDCTP-CEPI Lassa Fever Vaccines Call on Monday 27 January at 1400 (CET).
The Meeting will include:
Further information and registration details can be found on the EDCTP website*
Vaccines have contributed enormously to the successful control and elimination of many diseases, but few vaccines have so far been developed for the prevention and control of emerging infectious diseases. Lassa virus (LASV) has been added to the WHO R&D Blueprint list of diseases for which there is an urgent need for accelerated research and development, considering the disease’s potential to cause a public health emergency, and given the absence of efficacious drugs and/or vaccines. In the coming years, several candidate vaccines against LASV will enter clinical development and there is an urgent need to fast track their development. The aim is to facilitate the development of promising vaccines and the preparation of investigational sites in affected countries to be ready to perform proof of concept and/or pivotal efficacy trials.
The purpose of this call for proposals is to support distinct strategic actions (clinical research activities) which are part of efforts to prepare and conduct a large-scale clinical trial that has the potential to achieve proof of concept and/or the demonstration of pivotal efficacy of novel candidate vaccines against LASV.
Applications are invited for large-scale collaborative projects which include one or more clinical trials (phase II to III) aiming to accelerate the clinical development of Lassa candidate vaccines. Applications must include a minimum of one clinical trial to be conducted in affected countries in sub-Saharan Africa to test the safety, immunogenicity and/or efficacy of a candidate vaccine. Proposals that include phase III trials are particularly encouraged.
Projects should incorporate activities to enhance the capacity of existing trial sites and/or develop new trial sites in affected countries in sub-Saharan Africa for the conduct of vaccine trials. These activities could include observational (site set-up) studies, retrospective evaluation of available epidemiological data and prospective cohort studies to define incidence and case definitions for subsequent efficacy trials. Strengthening of laboratory testing capacity for case ascertainment and product evaluation is considered in scope when necessary for supporting the proposed clinical trial(s). This could include the evaluation of newly developed or newly standardized diagnostic assays for LASV and immunological read-outs for vaccine performance as well as the setup or strengthening of regional or in-country biobanks for sample storage and archiving.
These activities would ideally build on and leverage existing or developing networks of excellence or ongoing capacity development of researchers, institutions, and sites, including existing national or regional biobanking facilities, in sub-Saharan Africa, to conduct clinical trials and related research, including observational studies. The inclusion of plans to involve public health authorities in disease-endemic countries is also encouraged.
Supporting information on the composition and scale, as well as on the management structures and procedures of the large-scale clinical trial must be presented to enable assessment of their appropriateness.
The EDCTP Association and CEPI consider that proposals for actions of between 36 and 60 months duration would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. When the EDCTP Association and CEPI deem participation of the entity essential for carrying out the action, legal entities from anywhere in the world will be eligible for funding through this call for proposals.
Actions supported under this call for proposal should advance the development of promising LASV candidate vaccines moving towards regulatory licensure. The actions should also contribute towards a better understanding of the mechanisms of the reactogenicity (safety), immunogenicity and efficacy profile of the LASV candidate vaccine(s) and build capacity for the evaluation of vaccines against LASV and other EIDs in sub-Saharan Africa.
Capacity-enhancing activities should contribute to strengthening regional, national, institutional and individual capacities to conduct clinical trials for product evaluation according to ICH-GCP standards and generate data to inform trial design and appropriate endpoints.
A proposal/application will only be considered eligible if:
*The Participating States (European Partner States) are Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.
**The following sub-Saharan African countries: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo (Democratic People’s Republic), Congo (Republic), Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
The EDCTP-CEPI Online Information Meeting will take place on Monday 27 January 2020 at 1400 (CET). For more information and registration details, please visit the EDCTP website.
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CEPI’s third call for proposals (CfP3i) was for the development of human vaccines against Rift Valley fever and Chikungunya diseases. Rift Valley fever disease is included among the WHO R&D Blueprint list of priority pathogens in 2018, while Chikungunya is deemed to present a major public health risk where further R&D is needed. The call for proposals closed on March 5, 2019, (15:00 CET).
For any queries related the submission system, access to proposal templates, or any other issues related to this call for proposals, please contact [email protected].
The following documents are available below for you to read and download:
The decision to fund the development of vaccines against Rift Valley fever and Chikungunya is based on the feasibility of vaccine development and the potential public health impact of vaccines against these diseases. While vaccines against both viruses appear to be technically feasible, the commercial prospects for vaccines against Rift Valley fever are non-existent and for Chikungunya , uncertain at best.
Funding will be provided by CEPI with anticipated support from the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 programme.
CfP3i invited vaccine developers to achieve the following objectives:
For Rift Valley fever vaccines: support accelerated clinical testing or activities enabling clinical testing of the most advanced Rift Valley fever vaccine candidates, including identification of correlates of protection and their validation.
For Chikungunya vaccines: support the rapid progression of the most advanced Chikungunya vaccine candidates through mid-stage and late-stage clinical development, and support activities enabling future phase III testing, including identification of correlates of protection and their validation.
During the proposed project period, we encourage vaccine developers to work towards the following timelines:
A second open call (CfP3ii) is anticipated to open in 2020, which may advance work undertaken in CfP3i.
CfP3i presents a unique opportunity for CEPI and the European Commission to work in partnership to support the advancement and diversification of the current vaccine development pipeline against the Rift Valley fever and Chikungunya.
The budget of CfP3i is USD 48 million and it is expected to fund 1 to 8 projects. Funding for pre-award costs might be provided (conditions apply; see application documents). The budget for the second open call (CfP3ii) to open in 2020 is USD 100 million.
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Our first call for proposals was open to all types of organisations able to advance vaccine candidates from the late pre-clinical stage through to Phase II for our priority diseases, Lassa, MERS and Nipah.
We worked with the Research Council of Norway to create an online application for interested organisations. The deadline for round 1 applications was 8 March 2017. Following our review process, we then invited a number of applicants to submit their full proposals. The deadline for round 2 applications was 12 July 2017. We have so far announced seven partnership agreements to develop vaccines against Lassa, MERS and Nipah.
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On 1st September 2017, CEPI launched its Second call for proposals on vaccine platform technologies to promote the objective of developing development of real time response capabilities to novel emerging threats, and immunise at-risk populations against emerging infectious diseases, potentially resulting in great public health impact by rapidly limiting or ending outbreaks.
In response to this call for proposals, the Secretariat received over 35 applications, with a broad diversity displayed in the vaccine platform technologies being proposed, including both novel concepts and established technologies.
Applicants and their partners were from North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia, representing academic institutions, biotechs, large pharmaceutical companies and Product Development Partnerships.
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Biological standards play a critical role in advancing vaccine development. International standards enable the harmonisation and standardisation of assay data, which in turn allows the evaluation and on-going quality control of a product throughout its life cycle. Proper standards and common assays allow comparison between different vaccines and enable different groups to provide comparable data about a given vaccine.
In September, 2018, CEPI asked for the submission of proposals for one or more of the following:
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Early in 2017, CEPI and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation launched a request for information on rapid response vaccine and antibody technologies that could be used to address future emerging diseases.
We requested information on technologies related to production of both vaccines and antibody therapeutics. The request for information was used to inform of understanding of this landscape, as well as to influence the development of a call for proposals by CEPI for rapid-response platform technologies specifically for vaccine development.
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CEPI has invested in the development of multiple vaccine candidates against Lassa virus, some of which will begin testing in phase 1 clinical trials at the beginning of 2019.
We recently announced plans to provide grants for epidemiological studies of Lassa virus that will inform future trial design, endpoints, and site selection for Lassa-vaccine development.
We invited research groups to express their interest in performing such studies. The expression of interest served as a prequalification to apply for funding through a subsequent “request for proposals” on epidemiological studies of Lassa virus. Applicants were informed of selection results in October 2018.
In November 2018 CEPI, FDA Ghana, and the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research organised a workshop, in Accra, Ghana, involving pre-qualified applicants, to discuss how we should prepare for Lassa vaccine trials with targeted epidemiology studies.
The objectives of this workshop included:
1. Identification data needs, objectives, case definition, study designs, laboratory confirmation and key harmonised elements of CEPI-funded studies to facilitate vaccine development for Lassa
2. Discuss options for enhanced collaboration and set up of governance of the targeted epidemiology studies to be funded by CEPI Researchers from across west Africa who are engaged in Lassa-virus research attended the workshop.
Attendees presented their expert insights and experiences of undertaking such epidemiological research and discussed what epidemiological research programs are needed in advance of potential phase 1, 2, or 3 vaccine trials.
The presentations from this workshop are available to below.
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The 2014-15 Ebola outbreak in West Africa was a galvanizing event for the world, which led to the formation of CEPI. At the time of the outbreak a handful of vaccine candidates were in the pipeline, and while data on safety and effectiveness of the Merck VSV vaccine was gained from several clinical trials conducted in 2015-16, no Ebola vaccine is yet licensed.
Because the human response to vaccine is different than the response to natural infection, and the non-human primate model does not mirror the human response.
In 2018, CEPI issued a requested for proposals to further support animal-model developers, vaccine developers, and regulators to improve the scientific underpinning of Ebola vaccine development and help to better understand and collate information about the human immune response.