AUSTIN, TEXAS – October 17, 2023 – Globalization fosters connection and progress across national boundaries. However, as demonstrated by health crises like the COVID-19 pandemic and 2014 Ebola outbreak, an interconnected world is also vulnerable to the spread of disease. Preventing the spread of biothreat pathogens and disease requires a global detection and containment effort through collaboration. To this end, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) Cooperative Threat Reduction, Biological Threat Reduction Program has partnered with allied countries in Africa and multi-lateral-pan-African organizations to strengthen biosafety and biosecurity (BS&S) capabilities and maintain quality standards in laboratories which support biorisk management and biosurveillance functions across both the human and animal health sectors on the continent.
With the work awarded under this recent contract, DTRA builds upon years of collaboration with partner laboratories in Kenya, Cameroon, Gabon, and Guinea. The work scope includes maintenance of physical laboratory infrastructure, facility and equipment repair and maintenance, and laboratory training. Signature Science will support the contract team, led by Amentum and including i-Link Solutions, by developing and executing laboratory training plans and supporting the implementation of quality management systems. The team will work closely with local in-country laboratory staff and stakeholders to develop procedures that seek to standardize laboratory operations and quality assurance measures to the highest level across all participating laboratories. Through these efforts, the goal is to reduce the proliferation of especially dangerous pathogens through proper storage and accurate recognition, identification, detection, and reporting.
“We are thankful to both Amentum for bringing us on board, and to DTRA for selecting us to contribute to this important work,” said Dr. Stacy Agar, Signature Science’s bioscience lead for the effort. “Applying our quality assurance and laboratory training expertise to the mission of enhancing biosurveillance laboratory capability is perfectly in line with our company’s mission to bolster health security worldwide.”
Signature Science’s planning and analysis work under this contract will be executed at the Company’s offices in Charlottesville, VA and Austin, TX, with assessment support provided in-country.
A subsidiary of the Southwest Research Institute, Signature Science, LLC is a scientific and technical consulting firm providing multi-disciplinary applied research, technology design and development, and scientific, technical, and operational services to government and industry.