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The proposal to establish regional innovation network in the ASEAN territory is an initiative of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and supported by the World Health Organization (WHO) Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR). The network named as the ASEAN Network for Drugs, Diagnostics, Vaccines and Traditional Medicines Innovation (ASEAN-NDI) was proposed by the Philippines which was subsequently endorsed by the ASEAN SubCommittee on Biotechnology to the ASEAN Committee on Science and Technology which approved it and adopted it as an ASEAN initiative.

Local coordinators from Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam have started the mapping process to assess the product R&D landscape for infectious tropical diseases in the ASEAN region. While the focus is on infectious tropical diseases, the mapping project aims to establish the overall research capacity of ASEAN countries in diagnostics, drugs, traditional medicine, and vaccine innovation and their ability to respond to local public health needs.

Regional networks in China and India are also being established. While still in its early stages, these regions are undergoing independent R&D mapping activities. These countries will come together at a later stage to set the framework for the implementation of the larger regional innovation network for Asia. These regional networks form the core of activities that belong in the TDR Business Line on Innovation for Product Development in Disease-Endemic Countries (BL4), envisioned to foster the discovery and development of novel drugs, diagnostic tests and other products.

The following are potential areas of collaboration of ASEAN-NDI with partner institutions, researchers, agencies, and other health R&D innovation networks.

  • Strengthening cooperation of ASEAN member states in health R&D:
  1. Promote cooperation through sharing of information and experiences to prevent and control infectious diseases;
  2. Assist in harmonized conceptualization of ideas and projects
  3. Transfer of knowledge and/or technology among member states
  4. Facilitate collaboration in the development and actual conduct of R&D initiatives
  5. Consolidate regional, multisectoral cooperative arrangements in the prevention and control of emerging infectious diseases
  • Development of programs and projects which address public health concerns in ASEAN:
  1. Improve surveillance of infectious, emerging, re-emerging, and neglected tropical diseases, and even non-communicable diseases, which are becoming more prevalent in the community due to changing lifestyles
  2. Develop research projects to prevent and/or mitigate spread of disease through innovation in drugs, diagnostics, vaccines, and traditional medicine
  3. Improve access to affordable healthcare
  • Development of strategies to strengthen ASEAN member states’ capacity and competitiveness in the development and delivery of health related products and services:
  1. Facilitate research and cross country exchange of experience, products, and resources
  2. Promote the sharing of best practices in improving access to primary healthcare
  3. Establish regional support system and network to narrow the gap among ASEAN member states in addressing public health concerns in ASEA

Download the ASEAN-NDI brochure here


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Capabilities' Survey

ASEAN - NDI is conducting a survey of institutions involved in research and development (R & D), manufacturing, and production of drugs, diagnostics, vaccines, and traditional medicine. Data gathered from this survey will serve as inputs in mapping the capabilities of ASEAN-member countries and in assessing the needs of our region in R & D.

Who should fill out this questionnaire:
The recommended individual is any of, but not limited to, the following: (1) president/dean/ head of the institution; (2) senior research director; (3) head of program or unit conducting research; or (4) a researcher.


January - March 2015 Issue

October - December 2014 Issue

July - September 2014 Issue

April - June 2014 Issue