IWK Health Centre Foundation, chairman, Heather  Sutherland, and President and CEO of the IWK Health Centre, Anne McGuire, announced a $3.8 million donation to the Canadian Center for Vaccinology from sanofi pasteur, the vaccine division of sanofi-aventis Group. The multi-million dollar donation will be used to support human vaccine research that is unique in Canada.

Mark Lievonen, President of Sanofi Pasteur Limited, and Luis Barreto,  Vice President of Public, Scientific and Medical Affairs, Sanofi Pasteur Limited, came to visit the site of the future Sanofi Pasteur Human Vaccine Challenge Unit.

“Vaccine researchers in Canada are globally recognized for the exemplary work that they perform in Phase I through Phase IV research. What has been missing is a human vaccine challenge unit which will enable researchers in academia and industry to look at candidate vaccines and understand how they can be applied to current and emerging health issues,” explained Mr. Lievonen. “Our company is happy to support this new and innovative facility.”

One million dollars of the total donation from sanofi pasteur will support the completion the construction of the Sanofi Pasteur Human Vaccine Challenge Unit at the Canadian Center for Vaccinology. The purpose of this facility is to do very early clinical trials to determine that candidate vaccines do what they are meant to do and to show that responses are immunologically sound for the necessary protection. The Sanofi Pasteur Human Vaccine Challenge Unit will be a 5,400 square foot, ten-bed in-patient facility with isolation rooms, including full disease containment and full physiological monitoring.