Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group [to 12 Dec 2020]
No new digest content identified.


BARDA – U.S. Department of HHS [to 12 Dec 2020]
December 11, 2020: Trump Administration purchases additional 100 million doses of COVID-19 investigational vaccine from Moderna


BMGF – Gates Foundation [to 12 Dec 2020]
Press Releases and Statements
DECEMBER 09, 2020
Bill and Melinda Gates call for collaboration, continued innovation to overcome challenges of delivering COVID-19 scientific breakthroughs to the world
Gates Foundation pledges additional $250 million to accelerate development and equitable distribution of COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines to end the pandemic
[See Milestones above for detail]


Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute [to 12 Dec 2020]
The Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute is a non-profit biotech organization. Our mission is to develop products to fight malaria, tuberculosis, and diarrheal diseases—three major causes of mortality, poverty, and inequality in developing countries. The world has unprecedented scientific tools at its disposal; now is the time to use them to save the lives of the world’s poorest people
Geneva and Cambridge MA– (Wednesday 9 December 2020) –The Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) and the Bill & Melinda Gates Medical Research Institute (Gates MRI) signed an agreement today to advance the development of investigational sutezolid-containing TB drug regimens, especially for low- and middle-income countries, where most people with TB live. The drug candidate sutezolid, in combination with other drugs, could potentially be used as an all-oral, shortened regimen for all forms of TB, including multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB).
In October 2019, MPP and Pfizer entered into a license agreement, which granted MPP rights to sublicense to third parties the patents and know-how relating to the use of sutezolid (formerly known as PNU-100480), a promising antibiotic drug candidate, in combination with other agents for the prevention and/or treatment of TB. Gates MRI is the first recipient of such a sublicense. The sublicence allows Gates MRI to access Pfizer’s existing preclinical, phase 1 and phase 2a clinical study data and results with the aim of further developing this potential component of future TB regimens, should the data be supportive…


CARB-X [to 12 Dec 2020]
12.08.2020  |
CARB-X honored with award from the Global Health Technologies Coalition for progress made in accelerating R&D to combat drug-resistant bacteria
CARB-X has been awarded the 2020 Partnership Award by the Global Health Technologies Coalition (GHTC) for its work in accelerating R&D. The award recognizes CARB-X’s progress in expanding the pipeline of innovation that address one of the world’s most pressing public health crises, antibiotic-resistant bacteria.


CEPI – Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations [to 12 Dec 2020]
Latest News
CEPI statement on University of Queensland and CSL COVID-19 vaccine candidate
10 Dec 2020

CEPI and SK bioscience extend collaboration to develop ‘next generation’ COVID-19 vaccine
This collaboration represents CEPI’s first next-generation or ‘Wave 2’ vaccine investment
09 Dec 2020


EDCTP [to 12 Dec 2020]
The European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership (EDCTP) aims to accelerate the development of new or improved drugs, vaccines, microbicides and diagnostics against HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as well as other poverty-related and neglected infectious diseases in sub-Saharan Africa, with a focus on phase II and III clinical trials
No new digest content identified.


Emory Vaccine Center [to 12 Dec 2020]
Vaccine Center News
No new digest content identified.


European Medicines Agency [to 12 Dec 2020]
News & Press Releases
News: Meeting highlights from the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) 7-10 December 2020
CHMP, Last updated: 11/12/2020



News: Joint strategy sets direction for EMA and EU medicines regulatory agencies to 2025
Last updated: 08/12/2020
… The European medicines agencies network strategy to 2025 outlines six priority areas for the network:
:: the availability and accessibility of medicines;
:: data analytics, digital tools and digital transformation;
:: innovation;
:: antimicrobial resistance and other emerging health threats;
:: supply chain challenges; and
:: the sustainability of the network and operational excellence…


European Vaccine Initiative [to 12 Dec 2020]
Latest News
Dec 10 2020
Value of Vaccines campaign 2020: Collaboration- the key to efficient vaccine development


FDA [to 12 Dec 2020]
Press Announcements /Selected Details
December 11, 2020 – FDA Takes Key Action in Fight Against COVID-19 By Issuing Emergency Use Authorization for First COVID-19 Vaccine
… “The FDA’s authorization for emergency use of the first COVID-19 vaccine is a significant milestone in battling this devastating pandemic that has affected so many families in the United States and around the world,” said FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D. “Today’s action follows an open and transparent review process that included input from independent scientific and public health experts and a thorough evaluation by the agency’s career scientists to ensure this vaccine met FDA’s rigorous, scientific standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality needed to support emergency use authorization. The tireless work to develop a new vaccine to prevent this novel, serious, and life-threatening disease in an expedited timeframe after its emergence is a true testament to scientific innovation and public-private collaboration worldwide.”…

December 11, 2020 – FDA Statement on Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee Meeting
Following yesterday’s positive advisory committee meeting outcome regarding the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has informed the sponsor that it will rapidly work toward finalization and issuance of an emergency use authorization. The agency has also notified the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Operation Warp Speed, so they can execute their plans for timely vaccine distribution…

December 10, 2020 – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: December 10, 2020

December 10, 2020 – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: FDA Holds Advisory Committee Meeting to Discuss Authorization of COVID-19 Vaccine Candidate as Part of Agency’s Review of Safety and Effectiveness Data

December 9, 2020 – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: FDA Authorizes First Direct-to-Consumer COVID-19 Test System

December 8, 2020 – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: December 8, 2020


FDA – COVID-19 Vaccines [to 12 Dec 2020]
Upcoming Events
Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee Meeting

Virtual Press Conference: First COVID-19 Vaccine External Link Disclaimer
As part of the FDA’s commitment to transparency, we invite you to watch our virtual press conference, to be live streamed over the FDA’s YouTubeExternal Link Disclaimer, FacebookExternal Link Disclaimer and TwitterExternal Link Disclaimer accounts on December 12, 2020, at 9:00 AM ET.

FDA Takes Key Action in Fight Against COVID-19 By Issuing Emergency Use Authorization for First COVID-19 Vaccine
Today, the FDA issued the first emergency use authorization (EUA) for a vaccine for the prevention of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in individuals 16 years of age and older.

[See Regulatory Calendar above for details]


Fondation Merieux [to 12 Dec 2020]
News, Events
Mérieux Foundation co-organized event
Vaccine Acceptance Virtual Event Series – How to maintain and build trust in immunization
December 16, 2020 – 2:00pm – 4:30pm (CET) Virtual
An event to continue the dialogue and increase multi-sectoral efforts to promote vaccination acceptance and immunization programs resilience, now particularly challenged by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The erosion in vaccination trust and additional disruptions in routine immunization programs caused by the current pandemic is becoming an increasing threat to public health. How to tackle it?
To keep the momentum in this critical topic, we would like to bring together the vaccine acceptance public in this 2.5-hour webinar.


Gavi [to 12 Dec 2020]
News releases
What do immunity passports and vaccination certificates mean for COVID-19 restrictions?
Here’s why continuing to physically distance and wear masks is vital until we can be sure how long vaccine-acquired immunity lasts.
11 December 2020
An immunity passport is an official document that certifies “an individual has been infected and is purportedly immune to SARS-CoV-2.” In principle, this can then give an individual more freedom to travel and socialise, allowing people to enter a country if they can provide evidence that they have already recovered from COVID-19.
The theory is that by providing proof of a positive and then a negative test, the person will have had the disease and is expected to have developed antibodies or other forms of immune memory to protect them from getting ill again.
Hungary has introduced a policy allowing people to enter the country if they can provide evidence that they have already recovered from COVID-19. Iceland is planning on introducing a similar policy that will allow people who have already had COVID-19 to be exempt from the nationwide mask mandate. This raises difficult questions as some people with underlying health conditions, including autism, panic disorders and breathing difficulties, are already exempt from wearing a mask but have not necessarily recovered from infection or have any immunity to it.
In April, the World Health Organization (WHO) cautioned against the use of immunity passports saying: “there is not enough evidence about the effectiveness of antibody-mediated immunity to guarantee the accuracy of an ‘immunity passport’ or ‘risk-free certificate’.” It recently confirmed that this position has not changed.
WHO also suggested that immunity passports could in fact increase the risks of continued transmission, because those carrying one would ignore public health advice about physically distancing.
Immunity passports also raise ethical issues due to concerns that documentation could be fraudulently reproduced, and could even incentivise otherwise healthy people to “willfully seek out infection” so they could enjoy more freedom….


GHIT Fund [to 12 Dec 2020]
GHIT was set up in 212 with the aim of developing new tools to tackle infectious diseases that
Press Releases
December 8, 2020
GHIT Fund Announces New Investments: A Total of 230 Million Yen in Drugs for Malaria and Chagas Disease
The Global Health Innovative Technology (GHIT) Fund announced today a total of approximately 230 million yen (US$2.2 million*) to invest in four partnerships to develop new lifesaving drugs for malaria and Chagas disease. This includes three new projects and one that will receive continued funding.


Global Fund [to 12 Dec 2020]
No new digest content identified.


Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness [GloPID-R] [to 12 Dec 2020]
GloPID-R appoints new Chair and Vice Chairs to lead the network’s Board
GloPID-R is delighted to announce that Dr. Charu Kaushic has been appointed Chair of the network following the excellent work carried out by Prof. Yazdan Yazdanpanah over the past two years. Prof. Yazdanpanah will continue to serve GloPID-R as a Vice Chair.


Hilleman Laboratories [to 12 Dec 2020]
No new digest content identified.


Human Vaccines Project [to 12 Dec 2020]
Press Releases
No new digest content identified.


IAVI [to 12 Dec 2020]
No new digest content identified.



International Coalition of Medicines Regulatory Authorities [ICMRA]
Selected Statements, Press Releases, Research
No new digest content identified.



International Generic and Biosimilar Medicines Association [IGBA]
No new digest content identified.



Press Releases/Announcements
No new digest content identified.


IFRC [to 12 Dec 2020]
Selected Press Releases, Announcements
WHO, IFRC sign memorandum of understanding on emergency medical teams
The World Health Organization and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) today launched a new collaboration to strengthen the delivery of emergency medical and health services during humanitarian crises.
WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and IFRC Secretary-General Mr Jagan Chapagain signed a memorandum of understanding to cooperate on implementing the Emergency Medical Team (EMT) initiative.
“We thank the IFRC for their support from the onset of the EMT Initiative and we look forward to this continued partnership in improving the quality of care in emergencies,” said Dr Tedros. “With the COVID-19 pandemic and the significant increase in emergencies around the world, this agreement could not come at a better time.”
Mr Chapagain said IFRC was committed to working side-by-side with WHO in providing life-saving health services to communities affected by humanitarian emergencies.
“This MoU will allow us to standardize our emergency health response work and provide increased support for National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies which play such a crucial role in emergency response,” Mr Chapagain said. “We are very committed to working together with WHO to provide quality emergency health services that communities desperately need in times of crisis.”
The MoU, also known as the Red Channel Agreement, is the culmination of years of collaboration between IFRC and the WHO Emergency Medical Team Initiative.
The new agreement will bring more synergies to health emergency response between the two international organizations, particularly in technical standards, accountability, and coordination.
It aligns the IFRC’s system with that of the WHO Emergency Medical Teams global classification system, in doing so recognizing the IFRC’s Emergency Response Units as EMTs and heightens the involvement of IFRC teams and National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in the capacity building efforts of the EMT network.

Campaign showcases how cash assistance helps refugees in Turkey regain control of their lives
Ankara/Berlin/Geneva, 8 December 2020 – A digital campaign that connects inspiring and talented refugees in Turkey with influencers across Europe has been launched today by the International Federation of Red Cross Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). The ca …
8 December 2020


Institut Pasteur [to 12 Dec 2020]
Press documents
Gut microbiota plays a role in brain function and mood regulation
Depression is a mental disorder that affects more than 264 million people of all ages worldwide. Understanding its…


IRC International Rescue Committee [to 12 Dec 2020]
Media highlights [Selected]
IRC statement on death of staff member in Ethiopia
December 10, 2020

Press Release
Experts declare ‘famine like conditions’ for almost 17,000 people in Yemen, warns IRC
December 3, 2020


IVAC [to 12 Dec 2020]
Updates; Events
Webinar Recording: How will COVID-19 Vaccines be Deployed in Maryland and the U.S.?
December 2020
The International Vaccine Access Center (IVAC) hosted a webinar on October 21 2020 , “How will COVID-19 Vaccines be Deployed in Maryland and the U.S.? A conversation with state and local leaders working to equitably allocate vaccines in 2020 and beyond.” Description: This online panel about COVID-19 vaccine allocation in Maryland and the U.S. was […]


IVI [to 12 Dec 2020]
Selected IVI News, Announcements, Events
No new digest content identified.


JEE Alliance [to 12 Dec 2020]
Selected News and Events
No new digest content identified.


MSF/Médecins Sans Frontières [to 12 Dec 2020]
Latest [Selected Announcements]
Photo Story
A year in pictures 2020
11 Dec 2020


National Vaccine Program Office – U.S. HHS [to 12 Dec 2020]
Upcoming Meetings/Latest Updates
December 2020:
Preparing for COVID-19 Vaccination: Recommendations from the National Vaccine Advisory Committee – PDF
Approved December 4, 2020 :: 15 pages
The COVID-19 pandemic has created an unprecedented need for safe and effective vaccines, among other valuable public health interventions, to prevent further disease transmission and return society fully to normal activities. Many lessons have already emerged from the pandemic that showcase needs to innovate our processes for developing new and improved vaccines, as well as strengthen vaccine communication efforts and confidence in vaccines. Likewise, as the vaccine development process progresses, planning to include children and pregnant women in vaccination clinical trials poses special considerations. The NVAC reviewed, discussed, and approved the recommendations in this report to help ensure these efforts related to COVID-19 vaccination are successful and that we build on efforts to improve the U.S. vaccination system.


NIH [to 12 Dec 2020]
News Releases
Baricitinib plus remdesivir shows promise for treating COVID-19
December 11, 2020 — Peer-reviewed results of NIH clinical trial published.

NIH’s All of Us Research Program returns first genetic results to participants
December 10, 2020 — Personalized insights include genetic ancestry and traits, with health-related results to come.

NIH to fund cohort recruitment and development program to enhance diversity and inclusion among biomedical faculty
December 8, 2020 — Groups include underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, and women.

NIH-funded tool helps organizations plan COVID-19 testing
December 7, 2020 — Online calculator computes costs of testing and offers strategies for preventing infections in schools and businesses.


PATH [to 12 Dec 2020]
Press Release
Advancing Zambia’s goal to end malaria, PATH receives new award from the President’s Malaria Initiative
A new cooperative agreement will accelerate malaria burden reduction and elimination goals in Zambia.
December 8, 2020 by PATH


Sabin Vaccine Institute [to 12 Dec 2020]
Statements and Press Releases
No new digest content identified.


UNAIDS [to 12 Dec 2020]
Selected Press Releases/Reports/Statements
11 December 2020
The shero of Butha-Buthe: Matšeliso Setoko

9 December 2020
PrEP in the City: campaign for transgender women aims to increase PrEP uptake in Thailand

7 December 2020
New HIV infections among gay men and other men who have sex with men increasing


UNICEF [to 12 Dec 2020]
Selected Press releases, Statements
Press release 12/11/2020
Update on UNICEF’s response for Ethiopian refugees in Sudan and host communities

Press release 12/11/2020
Child poverty will remain above pre-COVID levels for at least five years in high-income countries – UNICEF
In high-income countries, only 2 per cent of fiscal stimulus was allocated specifically to support children during the first wave of COVID-19; a better balance of spending that provides more direct support to children is urgently needed

Statement 12/10/2020
Life a ‘waking nightmare’ for 12 million children in Yemen
UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore’s remarks at the Averting famine in Yemen: What can we do now and in 2021 event

Press release 12/07/2020
COVID-19: UNICEF warns of continued damage to learning and well-being as number of children affected by school closures soars again
UNICEF calls on governments to prioritize the reopening of schools, take all actions possible to make classrooms as safe as possible and avoid nationwide school closures


Unitaid [to 12 Dec 2020]
11 December 2020
Strategy development launched and new areas for intervention agreed at 37th meeting of Unitaid’s Executive Board
…The Board has approved an external review as an important step towards the development of Unitaid’s next strategy. As a key component of this process, extensive stakeholder engagement will be undertaken throughout 2021, to gain the thoughts and inputs of Unitaid’s partners, grant implementers and civil society groups.
The new areas for intervention agreed by the Board focus on challenges that are deeply relevant to Unitaid’s core work, namely reducing the number of women who die in pregnancy or childbirth, and increasing the detection of TB…

09 December 2020
Annual report: Advancing global health in the age of COVID-19

08 December 2020
Unitaid ranked as one of the world’s leaders in funding tuberculosis research


Vaccination Acceptance Research Network (VARN) [to 12 Dec 2020]
No new digest content identified.


Vaccine Confidence Project [to 12 Dec 2020]
Research and Reports
No new digest content identified.


Vaccine Education Center – Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia [to 12 Dec 2020]
Five ways to build confidence in vaccines
Heidi Larson, Director, Vaccine Confidence Project
With potential new vaccines for COVID-19 on the horizon, we need to engage with public to understand their concerns and build vaccine confidence.

“Vaccinate, liberate!” That could be the rally cry to mobilise public enthusiasm around the remarkable and rapid scientific progress that has made it possible to have not just one, but multiple, new COVID-19 vaccines. Vaccines which will finally help the world get back to some semblance of “normal” – or at least start the COVID-19 recovery path to a “new normal.”

Just think – we would be able to go back to work, get the economy back on track, spend cherished time with friends and families, attend sports events, go to concerts, and travel!

Addressing the challenges around vaccination
But not everyone is celebrating the value of vaccines. Some of the same people protesting against lockdown, and even masks, are also seeing vaccination as a form of control; ironically the one thing that has the potential to free us from the constraints of lockdown as well as, most importantly, freedom from disease.

This is one of many examples – including, but beyond COVID-19 – where there are vastly different, often polarised, interpretations of vaccines and vaccination.

Most people believe in the value of vaccines more broadly, with some having questions or concerns around one vaccine, but not others. There are some who are staunchly against vaccines, or at least opposed to the ways in which vaccines are regulated, recommended sometimes required by government.

These sentiments are not new to vaccines. The first organised “anti-vaccine” movement in the 1800s was actually call the “anti-compulsory vaccine league.” The protest was not against the vaccine, per se, but about the mandate requiring it.

The impact of coronavirus on routine vaccination
The pandemic has been a time when most governments have called for exceptional measures, limiting freedom of movement and socialisation, stopping some workplaces, even schools from opening – all to protect the public’s health.

In the meantime, many routine vaccines have fallen behind with all the restrictions and difficult access, alongside fear of contagion.

I propose five ways to build confidence, not only in a COVID-19 vaccine but pave the way for a new relationship around vaccines and the public.
1) Listen: There are many different experiences, histories, beliefs, perceptions and genuine questions around vaccines. Listen to them, they may reveal more than you expected and help understand what is driving those beliefs.
2) Engage: Make communication a dialogue, engage multiple people in the community outside of the health services to be listeners, and help address concerns and questions.
3) Innovate: Try something different than you have ever tried before. Try to think of anything else that is like a vaccine, think of metaphors. Does anything come close?
4) Co-create: Involve those who are meant to get vaccines in designing the best strategy to reach them and their peers.
5) Vaccinate Liberate: Think of all the ways that vaccination is a passport to freedom.


Wellcome Trust [to 12 Dec 2020]
No new digest content identified.


The Wistar Institute [to 12 Dec 2020]
Press Releases
No new digest content identified.


WFPHA: World Federation of Public Health Associations [to 12 Dec 2020]
Latest News
Being Rich and Sick Is Much Better than Being Poor and Sick!
Dec 10, 2020
Being Rich and Sick Is Much Better than Being Poor and Sick! With more vaccines on the way, we can see an end to the COVID-19 pandemic. But it remains to be seen how the vaccines will be distributed.

COVID-19 Vaccination: A Question about Global Equity in Health
Dec 8, 2020
COVID-19 Vaccination: A Question about Global Equity in HealthCOVID-19 has had no respect for borders! Vaccines against COVID-19 will be a scarce good, at least for some time ahead. Therefore, both in order to achieve the best possible population…

16th World Congress on Public Health: Personal Experiences
Dec 7, 2020
16th World Congress on Public Health: Personal ExperiencesIn October, several interns from the World Federation of Public Health Associations (WFPHA) were invited to help organize and attend the virtual 16th World Congress on Public Health (WCPH…


World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) [to 12 Dec 2020]
No new digest content identified.





ARM [Alliance for Regenerative Medicine] [to 12 Dec 2020]
Press Releases
No new digest content identified.


BIO [to 12 Dec 2020]
Press Releases
No new digest content identified.


DCVMN – Developing Country Vaccine Manufacturers Network [to 12 Dec 2020]
News; Upcoming events
No new digest content identified.


ICBA – International Council of Biotechnology Associations [to 12 Dec 2020]
No new digest content identified.


IFPMA [to 12 Dec 2020]
Selected Press Releases, Statements, Publications
Speak Up Africa and IFPMA launch the “Africa Young Innovators for Health Award” to fuel
08 December 2020



Pharma innovation delivers COVID-19 solutions beyond expectations, but calls for the dilution of intellectual property rights are counterproductive
08 December 2020

A broad alliance, a crucial mission: A new multi-stakeholder association to combat falsified medicines
07 December 2020


PhRMA [to 12 Dec 2020]
Selected Press Releases, Statements
New analysis finds stark difference in coverage of breast cancer medicines for seniors in the United States and England
Nicole Longo   |     December 10, 2020

Eli Lilly and Company Chairman and CEO David Ricks Becomes PhRMA Board Chairman
December 9, 2020
The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) is pleased to announce that David Ricks, chairman and CEO of Eli Lilly and Company, has assumed the role of chairman of the PhRMA board of directors.

Guest post: How COVID-19 underscores the importance of public confidence in vaccines
Guest Contributor   |     December 7, 2020
Serese Marotta, Chief Operating Officer for Families Fighting Flu, about the importance of influenza vaccination.