Ebola Vaccine Scientist

Ebola vaccine R&D

We have worked with the US National Institutes of Health’s Vaccine Research Center (VRC) and other partners to advance development of our GSK/NIH Ebola vaccine candidate.

This investigational vaccine showed promising results in pre-clinical (non-human) studies. Clinical development of the vaccine candidate progressed at an unprecedented rate, with first phase I safety trials with the vaccine candidate completed in the USA, UK, Mali and Switzerland. These studied the safety of the vaccine and determined if it generated a good immune response to Ebola in humans.

Initial data from a small phase I trial in the USA published in the New England Journal of medicine showed the vaccine candidate has an acceptable safety profile and can produce an immune response against Ebola in humans. Read the statement here.

Further data from other phase I trials will be published in the coming months and will tell us more about the profile of the candidate vaccine.


The UK-led trials were supported by funding from an international consortium involving the Wellcome Trust, the Medical Research Council and the UK Government.

In parallel, funding from the consortium enabled GSK to begin manufacturing thousands of additional doses of the vaccine. Initial data from the phase I trials showed the vaccine has an acceptable safety profile. Based on this, the next phase of clinical testing began early 2015 involving the vaccination of thousands of frontline healthcare workers in the affected countries. If the vaccine candidate is able to protect these healthcare workers as we hope it will, it could significantly contribute to efforts to bring this epidemic under control.
Beyond this, we are working with the WHO, regulators and other stakeholders to determine how and when near term supplies of the Ebola vaccine could be made available for targeted vaccination of additional health care workers and other people at high risk of infection in the affected countries where the impact would be most likely to limit the further spread of the epidemic.

Its future use in mass vaccination campaigns will depend on whether the vaccine candidate provides protection against Ebola without causing significant side effects and how quickly large enough quantities can be made.

We are actively exploring with relevant organisations and partners all opportunities to accelerate the development of manufacturing at an industrial scale so that if the trials are successful, we will be in a position to significantly ramp up production of the vaccine candidate to help combat this or future Ebola outbreaks. 

GSK acquired this Ebola vaccine candidate through the acquisition of a biotechnology company, Okairos, in May 2013 and has since been working with the US National Institutes of Health to develop this vaccine candidate in response to the threat of Ebola.

infographic ebola

Ebola infographic

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