UTMB awarded nearly $25M by US Dept. of Defense to develop vaccines in collaboration with Moderna

A sign is seen outside UTMB Health in Galveston, Texas, in this undated file image. (KPRC)

The University of Texas Medical Branch was awarded an agreement of nearly $25 million dollars from the U.S. Department of Defense to develop prototype vaccines against multiple diseases in collaboration with Moderna on Monday.

The following prototype vaccines are planned for development:

  • Ebola (EBOV)
  • Sudan (SUDV)
  • Marburg (MARV)
  • Lassa (LASV)

A news release stated that these diseases cause symptoms such as fever, malaise, myalgia, hemorrhage, and death.

The agreement comes with $13.5 million dollars of the filovirus vaccines through the completion of a Phase 1 trial, which will take place at UTMB’s Institute of Vaccine Sciences. The project could also receive up to an additional $11.1 million if additional options are provided to model alternative routes of vaccine administration or infection.

According to a news release, Dr. Alexander Bukreyev, UTMB researcher, will lead the project as principal investigator along with co-investigators Dr. Thomas Geisbert and Dr. Richard Rupp. They will conduct preclinical evaluation, non-clinical testing, and human clinical trials.

UTMB says there are currently no vaccines approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for Ebola, Sudan, Marburg, and Lassa.