Zoetis, in collaboration with a multidisciplinary team of public and private partners spanning animal and human health, announced the start of a program named “Bac Vactory,” to pave the way for development of a new generation of vaccines to help control bacterial infections that pose a significant threat to animals and people. The announcement took place on May 31, 2017 at the annual Immuno Valley conference in Utrecht, The Netherlands.
One Health Approach
During the next five years, the Bac Vactory program will examine bacteria that are closely related and cause diseases in humans and animals, in order to develop innovative, safe and efficacious vaccines. Combining knowledge from human and veterinary medicine will allow for an integrated approach.
“Through our participation in the Bac Vactory collaboration, we affirm our commitment to develop new animal vaccines to help our veterinarian and livestock farmer customers prevent diseases caused by ever-evolving bacterial pathogens,” said Dr. Scott Brown, Vice President, External Innovation, Research and Development at Zoetis. “Collaboration among scientists in veterinary and human health in a true ‘One Health’ approach and across academic institutions and the life sciences industry offers opportunities for Zoetis and its research partners to bring innovative vaccines for animals and people to market more quickly.”
He added that the project is part of a broader emphasis in research and development at Zoetis in solutions to prevent disease and, in turn, reduce the incidence of infectious disease and the need to treat it with anti-infective medicines.
Zoetis has the first rights to the results from the collaboration in the area of prevention or treatment of diseases or infections caused by Gram-positive pathogens, in particular Streptococci, in the field of animal health.
World-class Research Partners
The Bac Vactory programme partners include academic institutions Utrecht University, VU Amsterdam, VU Medical Centre, Eindhoven University of Technology, and Radboud University Medical Centre as well as corporate partners Zoetis, Wageningen Bioveterinary Research, Abera Biosciences, GlaxoSmithKline, Pulike Biological Engineering Inc., and Immuno Valley.
Funding for the new Bac Vactory collaboration comes from a Perspective Programme grant of two million euros by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) Domain Applied and Engineering Sciences. Zoetis and its industry partners will cumulatively contribute direct financing and in-kind support over five years valued at an additional one million euros.
In photo above, Zoetis colleagues Dr. Mahesh Kumar, VP Global Biologics (front right) and Dr. Rudiger Raue, Associate Director, External Innovation VMRD (back center), join representatives of the Bac Vactory collaboration at the Immuno Valley conference in Utrecht, The Netherlands on May 31, 2017.