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Identification of Mechanisms Correlating with Susceptibility for Avian Influenza (IMECS)
Start date: Apr 1, 2008, End date: Dec 31, 2012 PROJECT  FINISHED 

IMECS is a proposal of the FLUSECURE network aimed at combating the threat of new and re-emerging forms of highly pathogenic influenza in its first stages of a disease by identifying mechanisms of protection that are essential for a solid immune response to avian influenza. IMECS is uniquely featured by correlating research in humans directly to protection from influenza. The IMECS initiative was introduced since the recent H5N1 avian influenza vaccine trials results have shown limited success in inducing a protective immune response as compared to the standard human influenza vaccines. This despite large investments and multiple vaccine formulations tested. These results make clear that the mechanisms of immunity for avian influenza are inherently different from those for human/seasonal influenza. The IMECS initiative aims to elucidate these mechanisms and aims to provide essential knowledge for development of breakthrough pandemic vaccines as a result. The initiative thereto boosts the development of AI-correlates of protection for the clinical screening of vaccine candidates in healthy adults and in different target groups, the origin of subclinical AI infection in humans, as well as a research programme for the screening of vaccine candidates in vitro. The following research objectives are pursued: - Determining the basis of the homologous and non-homologous mechanisms of protection for avian influenza; - Determine the mechanisms of protection in specific target groups, including infants and the elderly; - Determining the AI-specific response after vaccination in clinical trial studies. IMECS combines the knowledge of leading European universities and research centres. The multidisciplinary consortium has the resources, skills and knowledge to realize the objectives of this collaborative research project.The consortium consists of 6 partners and two subcontractors from five different European countries and one disease endemic country (SICA)
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7 Partners Participants