$12 Million DARPA Award for Synthetic DNA Vaccines
October 20, 2014
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded $12.2 million for a collaborative study by scientists from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania; Inovio Pharmaceuticals; and MedImmune Inc., the global biologics research and development arm of AstraZeneca, Inc. The group will develop DNA-based monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) for infectious disease treatment. Together, the three organizations will develop and assess the DNA mAbs in preclinical studies, focusing on three disease areas: influenza-causing microbes, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus. The project proposes an entirely new technology, initially developed at Penn in the lab of David B. Weiner, PhD, professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, to provide a platform to rapidly protect people against emerging infections through the development of novel synthetic antibodies produced by the patients themselves.
Read the Department of Communications news release.