Aeras, CNBG team on TB vaccine deal

Non-profit developer Aeras is teaming up with the China National Biotec Group (CNBG) to jointly develop new tuberculosis vaccines. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. 

CNBG and Rockville, MD-based Aeras will collaborate on multiple aspects of development, including R&D work, manufacturing and global distribution of TB vaccines. A product development team, supported by financing and expertise from Aeras, will oversee the R&D plan and the construction of a new facility in China. 

According to a release from the two groups, the only currently licensed vaccine doesn't prevent pulmonary TB, which is a common form of the disease. The partners will collaborate on Aeras' recombinant Bacille Calmette-Guerin (rBCG) platform to improve the vaccine that's already available. Researchers will also explore potential booster vaccines to develop a strong, longer-lasting vaccine.

"The synergy created by bringing together our scientific and manufacturing expertise could have a substantial impact on efforts to advance innovative candidates in TB vaccine development," said Aeras CEO Jim Connolly in a statement. "We look forward to working with the largest biotech corporation in a country with the skills, resources and TB disease burden to play a major role in overcoming the complex challenges of TB vaccine R&D."

- check out the release