Rapid Antiviral Response Platform
COVID-19 has paralyzed the global economy. Never again!
The BioMed X Institute in Heidelberg starts a world-wide effort to build a universal Rapid Antiviral Response Platform which will allow to discover, develop, test and mass-manufacture new drugs against any viral pathogen in less than six months.
SARS-CoV-2 is a serious threat for global public health and the global economy
The coronavirus pandemic is teaching us an important lesson: Emerging viral pathogens can cause unprecedented damage to our public health systems as well as the global economy.
We need to make sure that this will never happen again. Current drug discovery, development and mass-manufacturing processes are far too slow to respond to a viral pandemic like COVID-19.
We need technologies that are at least ten times faster than the present state-of-the-art.
We at the BioMed X Institute are starting a global effort to develop an arsenal of ultrafast new antiviral drug discovery, development and mass-manufacturing tools that will allow to go from the identification of a new viral pathogen to 10,000 doses of a safe and potent new medication ready for clinical studies or compassionate use in less than 6 months. We call this the Rapid Antiviral Response (RAR) Platform.
All results and intellectual property rights which will be generated during the 5-year project term will be equally shared among all members of the RAR Consortium who financially supported the project. All companies, public health organizations, government agencies, foundations, healthcare funds and private individuals who share our values and want to create impact by protecting our global health and global economy from future viral pandemic threats, are welcome to join.
The RAR Platform will be developed using BioMed X’s successful new innovation model
BioMed X is an independent research institute at the interface between academia and industry on the campus of the University of Heidelberg, Germany. Our new innovation model is based on global crowdsourcing and local incubation, bringing together the best early-career biomedical scientists from the top universities and research institutions all over the world to tackle the biggest research challenges in the fields of biomedicine, molecular biology, cell biology and diagnostics. Our research projects are sponsored by pharmaceutical partners such as AbbVie, Boehringer Ingelheim, Janssen, Merck and Roche. Based on our successful track record combining the best of both worlds – academia and industry – we are convinced that our new innovation model is perfectly suited to develop an effective Rapid Antiviral Response Platform which will make a true difference in future viral pandemics.
Key facts on the RAR Consortium membership
- All members of the RAR Consortium make an equal financial contribution and receive equal world-wide rights in the resulting RAR Platform.
- All members of the RAR Consortium are entitled to nominate one Mentor who will participate in the selection of the five researchers and who will interact with these researchers throughout the project on a monthly basis.
- All members of the RAR Consortium are entitled to nominate one member of the Joint Steering Committee who will be involved in key decisions of the RAR Consortium and receive bi-annual progress reports.
The RAR Platform consists of eight project modules
Each module focuses on a different target space across a wide variety of virus genera. Each member of the RAR Consortium can choose to sponsor one of the following project modules:
- Inhibition of viral capsid proteins
- Inhibition of viral envelope proteins
- Inhibition of viral DNA/RNA polymerases
- Inhibition of viral proteases
- Targeted degradation of viral proteins
- Targeted degradation of viral DNA/RNA
- Enhancement of host cell immunogenicity
- Induction of host cell death
Each project module is expected to result in the following deliverables:
- Versatile and comprehensive novel drug screening platform across a wide variety of human/animal pathogenic virus genera
- Set of novel assay systems for efficient ex-vivo assessment of safety and efficacy
- Versatile and fast implementable mass-manufacturing process
At the end of the five-year project term, all results of the entire RAR Platform including all project modules will be transferred to all members of the RAR Consortium free of charge. This means that all members of the RAR Consortium will have equal semi-exclusive world-wide rights to use all components of the resulting Rapid Antiviral Response Platform for any commercial or non-commercial purpose.