GHIT invests $10.7 million in malaria, TB, leishmaniasis and dengue research

MMV and partners receive considerable support for early-phase R&D projects

05 Nov 2015

The Global Health Innovative Technology Fund (GHIT Fund), which in the last two years has invested US$43 million to develop innovative tools for fighting diseases worldwide, today announced it is investing $10.7 million at multiple points in the product development pipeline to seek new interventions for malaria, tuberculosis (TB), leishmaniasis and dengue.

The projects come at a crucial time for all four diseases: new drugs and vaccines for TB and malaria are desperately needed to fight rising resistance to existing therapies, while dengue infections continue to mount worldwide—and with no drugs or vaccines yet on the market to treat or prevent them. 

“We are excited about this latest round of investments as they showcase our aggressive ‘Hit-to-Lead Platform’ (HTLP) for advancing potentially promising new interventions that have been identified through our Screening Platform,” said GHIT Fund’s CEO Dr. BT Slingsby. “We’re also funding five new projects through our Product Development Platform and rolling out our inaugural investments in our Grand Challenges program,” he added. “Through these distinctly different initiatives, GHIT is establishing an effective, efficient and multifaceted process for harnessing Japanese innovation to fight diseases that are a major source of illness in the developing world.”

“These projects are early stage, but build on Takeda’s work with proteasome inhibitors, which has already led to new medicines for other diseases, including certain types of cancer,” said Dr. Timothy Wells, chief scientific officer at Medicines for Malaria Venture. “Combining proteasome expertise with malaria expertise represents a very innovative approach.”