The HIC-Vac network was set-up in 2017 with support from the GCRF Networks in Vaccines Research & Development, which is co-funded by the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) (part of the EDCTP2 programme supported by the European Union). The Network was also funded by Wellcome Trust in 2022-23.
The HIC-Vac network is directed by Professor Peter Openshaw and is hosted at Imperial College London within the National Heart and Lung Institute’s Respiratory Infection Section.
Our objectives are to deliver:
- A mutually supportive network of investigators
- Communication and advocacy for human infection challenge (HIC) studies through stakeholder engagement
- Pump-priming projects to enable, enhance and extend HIC
- Focus on LMIC capacity-building for conducting HIC studies
- Develop and share topic-specific guidance and best practice including regulatory and ethical frameworks
Our strategic priorities
HIC-Vac has 8 strategic priorities, chosen to advance the use of HIC studies, especially in LMICS where high-impact pathogens cause the greatest morbidity and mortality.
- Methodology development
- Deeper analysis of existing samples
- Ethical framework development
- Attenuated challenge
- Regulatory development
- Challenge agent manufacture
- Effect of co-infection on challenge
- Comparison of natural infection with challenge