Integration with BRIN will not hamper Merah Putih vaccine development

Integration with BRIN will not hamper Merah Putih vaccine development

Illustration—Researchers work in a Merah Putih vaccine research laboratory at a Bio Farma facility in Bandung, East Java, on August 12, 2020. (ANTARA PHOTO/Dhemas Reviyanto/foc/rst)

Jakarta (ANTARA) - The integration of non-ministerial government agencies and research and development units of ministries and agencies with the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN) will not hamper Merah Putih (Red and White) vaccine research, the BRIN head has said.

"Merah Putih vaccine research activities are still running and I make sure to focus on completing the targets that have been set," Laksana Tri Handoko said in a written statement received here on Friday.

Through the integration, the Merah Putih vaccine team could have access to more human resources and better infrastructure support, he added.

During the integration process, all research activities at former ministries and agencies (K/L) that joined with BRIN continued to run as before and they were asked to complete all targets that had been set, Handoko said.

The integration process was also an effort to increase the critical mass of research in Indonesia, which has so far been low, he added.

The focus of research carried out by BRIN in 2022 will be COVID-19 handling, especially the Merah Putih vaccine and the development of non-Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) detection tools, Handoko informed.

So far, the fundamental problems in research in Indonesia have been limited human resources, inadequate infrastructure, and limited funding, he said.

With the integration of all research institutions in Indonesia, the number of superior human resources will automatically increase, infrastructure will be completed, and funding will also increase, he said. In the end, this integration can increase the critical mass of research in Indonesia, he added.

Handoko said that by integrating Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology with BRIN, along with other research and development institutions and units such as the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) and Health Research and Development Agency (Balitbangkes), the Merah Putih vaccine team will be strengthened because of the increase in human resources.

Handoko assured that the Eijkman vaccine team would continue to run and become stronger because of access to other experts from former LIPI and former Balitbangkes.

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