To meet the dual threats of emerging infectious diseases and engineered biowarfare/bioterror agents, there is a pressing need for more efficient systems for vaccine development. TRIAD, or the Translational Immunology Research and Accelerated [Vaccine] Development program, based in the Biotechnology Program at the University of Rhode Island, has pioneered the development and application of an integrated "gene to vaccine" in silico, in vitro and in vivo vaccine design program to address this need, and has selected Category A pathogens F. tularensis, Category B agents Burkholderia pseudomallei and Burkholderia mallei, and emerging infectious diseases (HCV, H. pylori, tick borne diseases) as the focal point of our proposal. TRIAD will have three main objectives that will be managed by the central Administrative Core: 1. Create an easily accessed core collection of vaccine-development immunoinformatics tools (Triad Toolkit Core) and techniques (CMI core) for validating the results of their application. 2. Illustrate the use of the tools and techniques for four vaccine development programs: Multi-intracellular Pathogen Vaccine (Tularemia and B. pseudomallei, B. mallei), Helicobacter Pylori, and Hepatitis C, and Tick-borne diseases, 3. Advocate use of the tools through a pilot grant program - training members of the research community to exploit these tools, through symposia, workshops and pilot grants. TRIAD'S administrative core is located in the Biotechnology Program at the University of Rhode Island. The Biotech program is committed to providing the optimal environment for hands-on training in biotechnologies such as vaccines, from concept to manufacture. This proposal is synergistic with the aims of the Biotech program. The TRIAD program integrates perfectly with the Rl EPSCoR, which is administered by the same group of expert administrators. The project is consistent with the goals of the RFA, bringing the expertise of an integrated group of collaborators to bear on vaccine design and the training of new vaccine researchers.
The Administrative core will enable TRIAD to accelerate the development of vaccines for emerging and biowarfare pathogens and educate new generations of vaccine researchers, leading to significant improvements in global health and a radical transformation in the approach to vaccine design around the world.
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