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New immunization technologies will revolutionize health

Brussels, 21 October 2014

“Vaccination is the medical intervention that had the greatest impact on mankind. New technologies are increasing the power of vaccines to improve human health and soon we will see vaccines tackling not only infectious diseases, but also new diseases of our society such as cancer and neurodegenerative disease.”

This was said by Dr. Rino Rappuoli, coordinator of the EU funded ADITEC (Advanced Immunization Technologies) project and President of the Sclavo Vaccines Association during a special event at the Italian Embassy in Brussels last night. The event, organised in the context of the Italian Presidency of the Council, was dedicated to the High Impact Project ADITEC on the occasion of the third 3-day annual meeting that started today with over 120 delegates in attendance.

Ambassador H.E. Mr. Alfredo Bastianelli, warmly welcomed the scientist in the capital of Europe:

“Since my arrival in Brussels as Italian Ambassador to Belgium, I focused my attention in high-technology sectors such as aerospace, biotechnologies and ICT. This is the reason why, tonight I am particularly glad to host the Welcome Dinner of the Advanced Immunization Technologies Annual Meeting 2014”.

ADITEC is a European consortium of leading laboratories committed to pioneer new vaccine technologies. For example, the WHO’s leading candidate vaccine for Ebola is based on technology developed by ADITEC partner Okairos. The project started in October 2011 to accelerate the development of novel and powerful immunization technologies for the next generation of human vaccines. The project, backed by €30M co-funds from the European Commission, aims to establish a robust platform for innovation in this key strategic area with the potential for high socio-economic impact. Scientists from the most competitive research groups in Europe and the USA – 42 research partners in 13 countries – collaborate in this programme.

ADITEC covers a wide range of crucial aspects of vaccination; from breakthrough research on new technologies to clinical trials and public health. So far, the high impact project has led to the development of novel immunization technologies, including adjuvants, vectors and delivery systems, and a better understanding of their mechanisms of action, novel routes of administration, optimized formulations and vaccination strategies for people of different genders, age groups, with chronic diseases and genetic variations.

“ADITEC for the first time has conducted comparative studies with vaccine components (i.e. adjuvant and vectors) developed from different laboratories in EU and US.  In the first 3 years of the project, 9 clinical studies have been conducted, 4 already completed, to study the effect and mechanisms of action of immunization strategies analysed trough the latest technologies, including systems biology. For the first time, a systems biology study of influenza vaccination has been conducted in infants. During the last year, over 70 publications have been published in peer reviewed journals, this emphasizes the high impact of this project,”

adds Prof. Donata Medaglini from the University of Siena and Vice-President Sclavo Vaccines, ADITEC’s scientific coordinator.

Dr Ruxandra Draghia-Akli, Director of the Health Directorate at the Research Directorate General of the European Commission, stated that she was hugely proud of having contributed to the ADITEC project.

“The power of ADITEC is that it addresses the myriad of aspects of vaccine development: promotes the vision of vaccination not only in early life, but also across the whole lifespan. It is developing comprehensive predictive models for preclinical efficacy and safety for major infectious diseases, cancer and chronic disorders, as well as developing new delivery devices and routes of immunization, for example, by mouth, nose, or through the skin.”

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