Gates Foundation Awards $3.8 Million to Boost Access to Vaccines

Gates Foundation Awards $3.8 Million to Boost Access to Vaccines

Batavia Biosciences, a Dutch biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Leiden, has announced a $3.8 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to increase the availability and affordability of vaccines in developing countries.

The grant will support the company's efforts to reduce the manufacturing costs associated with critical vaccines, including vaccines for  polio and rotavirus, using Proventus Bio's whole genome RNAi screening technology. With the RNAi screening data, the company will be able to use its gene editing technology and cell line expertise to generate a range of new cell substrates that then can be assessed for manufacturing performance.

"The new cell substrates can significantly increase production yield and thus enhance vaccine availability against reduced costs," said Christopher Yallop, chief operations and scientific officer at Batavia Biosciences, which also has facilities in Woburn, Massachusetts, and Hong Kong.

"It is extremely rewarding," said CEO Menzo Havenga, "to be working with other best-in-class partners on a technology development that will have such significant impact in vaccine supply for those in need."