We are a group of citizen scientists motivated to action by the suffering caused by the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. We have a range of backgrounds and professions, but many of us are trained scientists and engineers. RaDVaC was launched by Preston Estep, Don Wang, Alex Hoekstra, and Ranjan Ahuja, who were soon joined by a growing contingent of friends and colleagues. This expanding core group met through our associations with Harvard Medical School and HMS Professor George Church. Our project was launched in the Boston area but is expanding steadily across the U.S. and throughout the world.
RaDVaC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, not a commercial organization. We have filed no patent applications or protections of intellectual property on the vaccine work described on this site, and are sharing our collective works and inventions under open licenses (CC BY 4.0 and OCL-P v1.1), and are partners of the Open COVID Pledge.
At the outset of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic in early 2020, as the death toll began to rise and fear gripped the most vulnerable, public health experts saw a single beacon of hope on the horizon. Experts from across the sciences agreed that vaccines would likely bring the virus under control, but along with this hopeful idea came a sobering jolt of reality: the vaccines would likely take at least a year to receive emergency use authorization (EUA), and even longer to be produced and deployed at scale. This yearlong delay would mark the most rapid deployment of vaccines in history; yet that delay killed millions and destroyed tens-of-millions of lives, families, and economies around the world while allowing the virus to spread widely and mutate into numerous variants, many more infectious than the original strain. Few understand that the vaccines which eventually received EUA were created in the earliest days of the pandemic, long before that regulatory allowance was granted. Regulators insisted that the delay was necessary for thorough testing of vaccines, with the goal of regaining trust. Both the public and the regulators, it seems, were unable to understand a relatively simple risk calculation: the longstanding safety record of modern vaccines relative to the risks posed by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. This calculation reveals that using modern vaccinology, it is virtually impossible to create a vaccine that is as dangerous or deadly as the virus. The science is clear: we can do better; we must do better.
Currently RaDVaC is focused on providing advisory services to organizations and governments interested in clinically testing vaccines based on the RaDVaC platform. Though there are now vaccines commercially available, RaDVaC’s IP-free designs remain highly relevant due to low cost, ease of production and administration, transportability, rapid iterability, and broad accessibility.