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King Saud University Medical City and the Sabin Vaccine Institute

Under the auspices of his Excellency the Rector, Dr. Badran Al-Omar, King Saud University partnered with the Sabin Vaccine Institute Product Development Partnership (Sabin PDP) to sign a project agreement with King Saud University to build vaccine research and development capacity in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and advance the establishment of a vaccine research institute in Saudi Arabia. The agreement was signed by Dr. Fahad AlZamil, Dean of the College of Medicine at KSU and Dr. Peter Hotez, president of Sabin.

As a U.S. Science Envoy travelling to Morocco, Saudi Arabia and Tunisia, Dr. Hotez has made several trips to the MENA region to mobilize support for greater resources and infrastructure to handle emerging public health threats. The U.S. Science Envoy Program was announced by President Obama in 2009 and is a core element of the Administration’s commitment to global engagement in science and technology. 

The project will focus on training activities that could lead to vaccine development for major and emerging neglected diseases and parasitic infections in the region. As part of this U.S.-Saudi initiative, Saudi scientists, including students and faculty, from Prince Naif Bin Abdulaziz Health Research Center at King Saud University in Riyadh, and other Saudi institutions, will receive technical training in vaccine development processes at the Sabin PDP laboratories, in Houston, Texas.

His Excellency the Rector, Dr. Badran Al-Omar said this partnership was important for the Kingdom to combat health issues including the MERS virus and was very appreciative of the efforts of the CEO of KSU Medical City, Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Muammar, the Dean of College of Medicine, Dr. Fahad Al Zamil, the Director of Prince Naif Bin Abdulaziz Health Research Center, Dr. Abdullah Aldahmash and all the university staff who are carrying the mission in the medical field to support the community.