Immunization, Vaccines and Biologicals

Product Development for Vaccines Advisory Committee (established April 2014)

Meetings, terms of reference and composition


Terms of reference

The Product Development for Vaccines Advisory Committee (PDVAC) provides strategic advice and recommendations to WHO related to vaccines at the Phase 2 stage of clinical evaluation or earlier. The committee’s remit is for disease areas where there is substantial disease burden in low and middle income countries, no vaccines or products currently exist, and there is some ongoing product development activity which may benefit from guidance from WHO. This committee may also have a role where first generation vaccines are licensed but development of improved second generation products is a priority for WHO. PDVAC will remain briefed on Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) recommendations within the product development area, and be guided by SAGE on its activities.

This committee will be asked to advise on the following areas:

  • “scanning the horizon” to identify new diseases where there is sufficient priority for WHO to initiate activities;
  • initiating consensus building for roadmap development;
  • improving comparability of vaccine trial endpoints for vaccine policy decision making;
  • prioritizing and advising on development of WHO preferred product characteristics to guide target product profiles in use by vaccine manufacturers and funding agencies;
  • reviewing other WHO products, including methods, protocols, tools and approaches for accelerating product development and improving suitability for low and middle income countries;
  • stimulating research by partners in line with WHO priorities; and
  • advising WHO on ways to improve public access to information about products in development.

Expected outcomes

  • Recommendations for WHO’s activities related to early stage vaccine research and development;
  • Consensus reached on disease areas where clinical endpoints consultations and vaccine Preferred Product Characteristics (PPCs) should be developed; and
  • Activity planfor the subsequent year



  • Salim Abdulla, Ifakara Health Institute, United Republic of Tanzania.
  • Ashish Bavdekar, Department of Paediatrics, KEM Hospital and Research Centre, Pune, India.
  • Klaus Cichutek, Paul Ehrlich Institut, Germany.
  • Bernard Fritzell, BFL Conseils, France.
  • Firdausi Qadri, International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh.
  • Barney Graham, Vaccine Research Center, NIAID, USA.
  • Greg Hussey, Institute of Infectious Diseases and Molecular Medicine, University of Cape Town, South Africa.
  • Ruth Karron, Center for Immunization Research, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, USA.
  • David Kaslow, PATH, USA.
  • Claudio Lanata, US Naval Medical Research Unit No 6, Peru.
  • Mair Powell, Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency, United Kingdom.
  • Yiming Shao, Department of Research on Virology and Immunology, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, China.
  • Peter Smith, MRC Tropical Epidemiology Group, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, United Kingdom.
  • Alejandro Cravioto, Senior Epidemiologist, Global Evaluative Sciences USA, Inc., Seattle, Washington, USA

WHO Secretariat

  • Birgitte Giersing
  • Vasee Moorthy