In April 2017, the Center for Vaccine and Adjuvant Research (CVAR) was established as a Japanese research and development base for innovative research into next-generation vaccines and adjuvants, which have globally expanded, as well as the comprehensive promotion and support for the gathering of knowledge by industry, academia, and government as participants in the National Institutes of Biomedical Innovation, Health and Nutrition (NIBIOHN). In addition to research projects that can contribute to the development of the innovative vaccines and adjuvants, we have worked on studies for the formulation of antibodies, the construction of an immunological assessment system, clinical study designs, and the development of a side effect prediction system.
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As a recent research and development trend, the developmental target of vaccines has expanded not only to infections but also to such conditions as Alzheimer's disease, epilepsy, hypertension, smoking cessation, and obesity. Attempts have also been initiated to develop vaccines that induce the body to produce antibodies as an alternative agent to expensive antibody therapies; we can say that the systemic promotion of vaccine therapies in the broad sense, not limited to infections, is required. Research departments with technical bases in the study fields that are necessary for or can very strongly support the development of vaccine preparations and adjuvants as advanced biologicals are consolidated in the NIBIOHN. Research institutions and study clusters by pathogen or disease have been located in various regions in Japan. However, as for the science and technology of the vaccines and adjuvants, we can say in confidence that our goal is to make the CVAR the Japanese leading research institution in the future.
In the meantime, strategies for vaccination-related side effects, especially rare reactions, are urgent issues, and biomarker exploration(e.g., serum proteome, metabolome, and microRNA analyses) in clinical research studies with human samples is expected to be effective. We will proceed with such studies based on the adjuvant database for the safety of the vaccines. As long as there are patients who actually experience side effects (including adverse reactions and events), we would like to contribute to medicine with near-future vaccines, keeping in mind that we are obliged to sincerely continue the investigations for causes of side effects as well as the medical, economical, and social relief. We would be grateful if you could cooperate with us in our efforts.