The UU-EMC-Harbour consortium will leverage their experience and expertise in coronaviruses, heavy-chain antibody platform technologies and establishment of relevant animal models. Using established technology platforms, they will isolate and characterise potent neutralising SBDs (in the form of nanobodies and human HCAbs) targeting the spike glycoprotein of SARS-CoV-2.
The world is not well prepared for newly emerging zoonotic viruses with epidemic/pandemic potential. Newly developed vaccines or therapeutic antibodies will come too late in outbreak situations. Therefore, the aim is to develop novel broad-spectrum intervention concepts and/or solutions, which can be applicable to combat current and potential future emerging viruses.
The aim is proof-of-concept that conserved sugars expressed on the bacterial cell wall can be used as vaccine antigens to protect livestock against zoonotic bacteria. This strategy overcomes the major hurdle of narrow serotype specificity of traditional glycoconjugate vaccines, opening up new vaccine options for a broad range of pathogens.