The SARS Accelerated Vaccine Initiative (SAVI) and the search for a SARS vaccine

Abstract number: 1133_57

Brunham R.C., Finlay B.

Canada was the most affected nation outside of Asia following the worldwide spread of SARS in 2003. Over 42% of the 251 cases occurred in healthcare workers and the rapid development of a vaccine was deemed an urgent public health priority for Canada. A novel research management structure called SAVI was developed in May 2003 and was predicated on accelerating vaccine research by parallel processing of multiple science projects. During 18 months of operations SAVI developed and evaluated 3 key vaccine strategies including whole killed virus (WKV), recombinant spike protein and viral vectored vaccines for SARS CoV. Two vaccines (WKV and adenovirus vectored) were compared head to head in two animal models (B129 mice and outbred ferrets). Overall WKV vaccine with or without alum adjuvant generated substantial neutralizing antibody titres and reduced viral shedding in the upper and lower respiratory tract of SARS CoV challenged experimental animals. WKV vaccine appeared more efficacious than adenovirus vector vaccines expressing the S and N genes. Nonetheless, inflammatory pathology occurred in the lungs of experimental animals following challenge despite favorable serological and virological response to vaccine.


The results suggest that human trials with WKV vaccine should proceed with caution.

Supported by:  

A grant in aid to the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research from the government of British Columbia and by the CIHR.

Session Details

Date: 01/08/2007
Time: 00:00-00:00
Session name: XXIst ISTH Congress
Location: Oxford, UK
Presentation type:
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