LONDON, United Kingdom, OSLO, Norway – 8 March 2022: On the day of the Global Pandemic Preparedness Summit, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), the UK Government and members of the life sciences industry have issued a joint statement committing to deliver CEPI’s ambition to develop vaccines against emerging diseases in as little as 100 days. This 100 Days Mission, put forward by the UK Government under its G7 Presidency in June 2021, and backed by leaders of the G7 and G20, sits at the heart of CEPI’s five-year pandemic preparedness plan.
Partnerships across the private and public sectors are key to delivering this mission. The life sciences industry plays a critical role in driving innovation in R&D capabilities, vaccine technology and manufacturing processes, supporting clinical trials infrastructure and collaboration, and in enabling equitable access. Today, industry has stepped forward to commit its expertise and resources to achieving the 100 Days Mission, including by investing in research and development to combat those diseases most likely to cause epidemics and pandemics and reducing manufacturing complexity.
The Global Pandemic Preparedness Summit, co-hosted by the UK Government in London, brings together leaders from government, industry, philanthropy, academia, and civil society to galvanise action around pandemic preparedness, and explore what it will take for the world to develop and enable access to safe and effective vaccines against new pathogens in 100 days.
The faster an effective vaccine is developed and deployed, the faster an incipient pandemic can be contained and controlled. In the case of COVID-19, a 100-day timeline would have seen a vaccine ready to use in mid-April instead of December 2020. This could have saved millions of lives and trillions of dollars. Achieving the 100-day goal would give the world a fighting chance of containing an outbreak before it spreads globally and becomes a pandemic. Coupled with improved surveillance to provide early detection and warning of new threats, and swift use of non-pharmaceutical interventions, a vaccine in 100 days could defuse the threat of a new pathogen with pandemic potential.
Liz Truss, UK Foreign Secretary said:
“Britain is taking the lead to ensure the world is ready to tackle future pandemics. Today’s summit and the commitments from governments and industry are important steps towards achieving the goal of having safe vaccines ready within 100 days of a future pandemic, to save millions of lives.”
Sajid Javid, UK Heath and Social Care Secretary said:
“The UK was at the forefront of the global fight against Covid, securing equitable access to lifesaving vaccines for people in need across all corners of the world. Now, as we learn to live with Covid, its vital that we take forward the lessons learnt from this pandemic.
“A key part of our success was the development of safe and effective vaccines in unprecedented timeframes. This is why the UK government is committed to supporting CEPI’s 100 Days Mission – and the Global Pandemic Preparedness Summit marks a vital step in making this mission possible.
“I am proud to share CEPI’s ambition to have vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics within 100 days of an epidemic or pandemic threat being identified, and I am confident the £160 million we have pledged will go a long way to kickstart these plans and potentially save millions of lives.”
Dr Richard Hatchett, CEO, CEPI said:
“CEPI is extremely grateful for the support of the UK Government and the life sciences industry. Collaboration across the public and private sectors will be absolutely critical if we are to achieve the 100 Days Mission, and CEPI – as a coalition – is ideally placed to make the goal a reality.
“The Global Pandemic Preparedness Summit is an important milestone on our journey towards making pandemics a thing of the past. We have a window of opportunity to learn from the terrible experiences of the past two years and build a world that is prepared to tackle the next pandemic threat. We must seize this opportunity, together.”
Thomas Cueni, Director General, International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations, said:
“COVID-19 has taught the global healthcare community hard but important lessons. Let’s use them to make our defences against the next pandemic more nimble, more robust, and – above all – more equitable. We have seen the strength of a strong innovation ecosystem leading to the rapid development of multiple solutions, acting to expand partnerships, knowledge-sharing, and technology transfer in unprecedented ways. CEPI has played a critical role in bringing people across the innovation ecosystem together in the COVID-19 pandemic and we look forward to continued cross collaboration with CEPI as we prepare for future pandemics”.
Richard Torbett, Chief Executive, Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry, said:
“The UK has played an important global role in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s vital that the world is even better prepared against future health threats, and the work between CEPI and governments around the world is central to this. Many companies are working around the clock to make the 100-day mission possible. Our industry is determined to ensure we can hit the ground running in the face of future pandemics; to develop vital vaccines and therapeutics quickly and safely, and get them to the people who will need them, wherever they are”.
Dr. Michelle McMurry-Heath, President and CEO, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization, said:
“The COVID-19 virus has reinforced the importance of a robust and functional vaccine ecosystem. We’ve witnessed firsthand over the last two years the power of strong collaboration between academia, small and large biotech companies, regulatory officials, and manufacturing sectors – all in record time. Supporting partners like CEPI, along with other NGOs, are crucial to ensuring rapid and equitable access to vaccines on every corner of the globe. We look forward to collaborating with CEPI in their effort to fully replenish funds to boost pandemic preparedness and vaccine access to save lives”.
Steve Bates OBE, Chief Executive, the BioIndustry Association, said:
“The UK’s experience of true partnership working between government, science, academia and industry embodied in the Vaccines Taskforce enabled lightning speed progress in developing vaccines and therapeutics for this pandemic. As the UK hosts this key global event, we both offer our practical expertise in what worked well to colleagues from around the world and seek to learn, partner and prepare better for the future”.
Rajinder Suri, CEO, Developing Countries Vaccine Manufacturers Network, said:
“During the past two years we have witnessed an unprecedented global collaboration, advances in science and technology, regulatory flexibilities and manufacturing at risk, which made it possible to develop and roll-out the COVID-19 vaccines in record time. The continued all round presence and support of CEPI right from identification of partners to development, scaling up and scaling out of vaccines has been critical success factor. We at DCVMN strongly believe that Mission 100 Days would turn out to be a pathbreaking step in the preparedness for any future pandemic!”.
The full statement is available to read here.
Notes to editors
Specific commitments announced in the joint statement published today include:
-The UK Government aims – in keeping with its Life Sciences Vision published in July 2021 – to deliver a research and development network, accessible to industry, to speed up the development and delivery of novel vac The UK Vaccines Taskforce has been an exemplar of Government and industry working together to accelerate vaccine development.
-CEPI’s five-year strategy aims to make the development of vaccines against emerging pathogens within 100 days a reality, because the quicker a safe, effective and globally accessible vaccine is developed and deployed, the quicker an incipient pandemic can be contained and controlled. Achieving the 100 Day Mission, through CEPI’s innovative programme of access-focused R&D, would give the world a fighting chance of defusing the threat of future pathogens with pandemic potential.
-Associations representing vaccine manufacturers from across the world, as well as the broader biotech and biopharmaceutical industry (ABPI, BIO, BIA and the Developing Countries Vaccine Manufacturers Network (DCVMN) and IFPMA – see full statement here) commit to:
>Investing in research and development on target pathogens with epidemic and pandemic potential and to build a portfolio of promising candidate vaccines, treatments and technologies.
>Working to reduce manufacturing complexities and developing new manufacturing methods to adapt and quickly expand manufacturing capacity for new vaccines to address future public health emergencies.
>Producing high-quality evidence, at speed, on the efficacy and safety of our products, both prior to and during pandemic conditions, and maintaining the highest levels of quality and ethical standards, transparency and accountability, therefore contributing to a strengthened global clinical trial infrastructure.
The full statement is available to read here.
CEPI is an innovative partnership between public, private, philanthropic, and civil organisations, launched at Davos in 2017, to develop vaccines against future epidemics. Prior to COVID-19, CEPI’s work focused on developing vaccines against the Ebola Virus Disease, Lassa virus, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus, Nipah virus, Rift Valley Fever virus and Chikungunya virus. It has over 20 vaccine candidates against these pathogens in development. CEPI has also invested in new platform technologies for rapid vaccine development against unknown pathogens (Disease X).
During the current pandemic, CEPI initiated multiple programmes to develop vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 and its variants with a focus on speed, scale and access. These programmes leverage the rapid response platforms developed by CEPI’s partners prior to the emergence of COVID-19, as well as new collaborations. The aim is to advance clinical development of a diverse portfolio of safe and effective COVID-19 candidates and to enable fair allocation of these vaccines worldwide through COVAX.
CEPI’s 5-year plan lays out a $3.5 billion roadmap to compress vaccine development timelines to 100 days, develop a broadly protective vaccine against COVID-19 and other Betacoronaviruses, and create a “library” of vaccine candidates for use against known and unknown pathogens. The plan is available at http://www.endpandemics.cepi.net.