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HHS’ $5B Project NextGen Kicks Off Activities to Streamline Vaccine Development, Commercialization

The Department of Health and Human Services has outlined several focus areas of a $5 billion government initiative to fund public-private collaborations working to speed up the development of next-generation vaccines and other therapeutics.

Project NextGen aims to streamline the process from drug development to government approval to prepare and protect the country from future epidemics, HHS said Thursday.

The program, first announced on April 10, prioritizes pan-coronavirus and mucosal vaccines, monoclonal antibodies against new variants of the COVID-19 virus, and more cost-effective technologies for producing such medicines.

Project NextGen will be managed by the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, a division of the Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response, and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

BARDA has already kicked off activities, including partnerships with pharmaceutical companies to de-risk product development, and research efforts to identify immunity aspects that can predict vaccine success.

NIAID is also lending its clinical trial networks to help the project evaluate early vaccine candidates.

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