CAMBRIDGE, MA. and LEBANON, NH. and NEW YORK, NY. Aug. 12, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Celdara Medical (“Celdara”) announced that the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to fund the company’s development of advanced antivirals for the treatment of pandemic and interpandemic influenza (flu).
The funding will support a demonstration of proof-of-concept against future pandemic threats as a part of Celdara’s Pandemic Security Initiative. The Initiative is a framework for public-private partnerships that integrates ground-breaking science, entrepreneurial innovation, public-sector investment, and private-sector business acumen to develop and produce the treatments and vaccines that will help address future pandemic-threats.
“We are extremely grateful for this support, especially during these challenging times,” said Dr. Jake Reder, co-founder and CEO of Celdara. “While it can be difficult to imagine, the threat from a virus as seemingly familiar as the ‘flu’ has the potential to be deadlier than COVID-19. The scientists and policymakers at NIAID and across NIH know this well, and we are therefore heartened that during a global pandemic, preparedness against other threats continues to be a priority that is supported. The scientific foundations in this country are strong – unparalleled – and we ‘re pleased to be able to translate those innovations and discoveries into medicines that can help patients and secure our health and economy against pandemic threats.”
Influenza’s pandemic potential is well known. The H1N1 pandemic of 1918 claimed at least 50 million lives worldwide, while the H2N2 pandemic of 1957 and the H3N2 pandemic of 1968 each claimed over a million lives globally. The 2009 H1N1 pandemic was estimated to have killed as many as 575,000 people in its first year, and has since been endemic, as a seasonal flu.
The morbidity and mortality associated with, for example, highly pathogenic H7N9 and H5N1 avian influenzas, merits the urgent development of medical countermeasures to secure ourselves against outbreaks. If successful, the work supported by this grant will provide powerful and innovative tools for our frontline healthcare workers to treat patients, battle outbreaks and prevent pandemics from occurring.
Research reported in this press release is supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases of the National Institutes of Health. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.
About The Pandemic Security Initiative
The Pandemic Security Initiative seeks to protect the nation from future pandemics by developing tests and medicines that integrate the best of ground-breaking science, entrepreneurial innovation, public-sector investment and private-sector efficiency. Celdara Medical initiated this work in 2014 and formalized it under the Pandemic Security Initiative umbrella in early 2020 to capture learnings from, and aid in the response to, COVID-19.
Celdara’s Academic Partner Network includes collaborations with 60 leading universities, and thousands of pipeline innovations from all 50 states. With support from the public and private sectors, including the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), its mission is to identify and develop innovative diagnostics, prophylactics and therapeutics against pandemic- scale threats. The Pandemic Security Initiative is an entrepreneurial-operating, health-security product developer. For more information on the Pandemic Security Initiative visit pansec.org