|Lead Investigators||Ram Sasisekharan, Eng Eong Ooi|
|MIT Investigators||Jianzhu Chen|
|Associate MIT Investigators||Paula Hammond, Steven Tannenbaum|
|Singapore Co-Investigators||Choon Nam Ong, Pei Yong Shi|
The major long-term goal of the Dengue Program is to develop vaccines that can prevent dengue infection and/or prevent disease development following infection. The ID IRG will approach this challenge by synergistically combining its expertise in life sciences, physical sciences and engineering. In the short term, the ID IRG aims to develop 1) a universal vaccine that is effective against all four serotypes for clinical evaluation in four years, and 2) a set of general principles for vaccine development, including antigen selection, expression, delivery, immunological, efficacy and safety characterization.
To reach our goals, the ID IRG will focus on the several key and inter-related areas. Firstly, we have developed the full suite of omics tools to interrogate the host response to infection and vaccination. This would guide the development of vaccine candidates and choice of adjuvants to maximise immune response to vaccination. Secondly, we will exploit the power of novel bioinformatic approaches to identify epitopes that elicit the best protective responses. Thirdly, we will develop novel methods to deliver the vaccine that takes advantage of the natural innate immune responses. Finally, we will also develop animal models that would enable us to glean maximal information on the human immune responses to vaccination.