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Sanaria developed a malaria vaccine that protected 100% of subjects in a clinical group. Help fund SporoBot, the robot to automate the vaccine production!
Alexander Hoffman
Identity Verified
Rockville, Maryland
United States
4 Team Members

Build A Robot. Fight Malaria. Save Lives!

Wired - The Next Big Thing You Missed: This Mosquito-Dissecting, Malaria-Killing Robot Needs Your Help

New York Times - A Goal to Combat Malaria With the Help of a Robot

Boston Globe - Robot May Help Fight Malaria

Daily Beast - The Robot That Could Kill Malaria

Science - Wanted - A Bug Spit Robot

Tech Republic - How a Crowd Funded Robot Could Finally End Malaria

Global Dispatch - Crowdfunding to Combat Malaria

International Business Times - Robot Combats Malaria with World's First Vaccine

Bioresearch Online - Biotech Form Aims to Automate Malaria Vaccine Production

The Register - Malarial Vaccine Firm Seeks Crowdfunding for Robo-Saliva Surgeon

Bostinno - DC Based IndieGoGo Campaign Calls Upon Harvard Robotics Team to Help Cure Malaria

SANARIA is a biotechnology company located in Rockville, Maryland, USA. Sanaria has developed a malaria vaccine that protects against the Plasmodium falciparum parasite, responsible for more than 98% of malaria associated deaths world-wide.

Until now no vaccine has ever fully protected people against the malaria parasite. Sanaria’s PfSPZ Vaccine now shows real promise in meeting that standard. In August 2013 Sanaria published groundbreaking clinical trial results: In the group that received the highest dose, PfSPZ Vaccine was 100% protective against malaria. See the results published in Science magazine here

As a result we received extensive press coverage for this groundbreaking achievement. Read the New York Times article on SporoBot™ here.

Currently we do a key step of the vaccine manufacturing process by hand. To reduce the cost of the vaccine and scale up production, we need to automate this key step.

All funds received from the campaign will be directly used to develop and implement SporoBot™. SporoBot™ will automate a key component of the manufacturing process, facilitating inexpensive mass production of the critically needed malaria vaccine.


We've built the parts, we've demonstrated they work, now we need to assemble SporoBot™ into a working prototype. And for this, we need your help.

With SporoBot™, Sanaria’s PfSPZ Vaccine can be made accessible to the millions of people most at risk. Please help protect these people to prevent the more than 200 million cases and more than 600,000 deaths caused by malaria every year. 

Worldwide Need

Sanaria’s PfSPZ Vaccine is made from living, weakened malaria parasites (called sporozoites) that trigger protective immunity without causing disease. The sporozoites are produced in mosquitoes, and become concentrated in the insects' salivary glands. To make the vaccine, Sanaria’s mosquito dissectors remove the heads of mosquitoes and extract their salivary glands. Currently, we do this by hand dissection, but to produce the quantities of vaccine needed to treat hundreds of millions of people as quickly and as inexpensively as possible, we want to automate this process. Our plan is to develop a robot we call SporoBot™ and use it in performing this crucial step in vaccine production. As a result, we will increase manufacturing efficiency and decrease costs. With your help we can and will do both.

We estimate one SporoBot™ will be able to produce vaccine at 20 - 30 times our current efficiency. While we go forward using the current manufacturing process, SporoBot™ will enable greater productivity and will permit a more rapid production and deployment of greater quantities of the vaccine. Greater abundance and faster deployment of the vaccine will push forward the eventual elimination of malaria and the immeasurable improvement in the lives of billions of people now living under the threat of this disease.

Who We Are

In 2003, Dr. Stephen Hoffman and Dr. Kim Lee Sim started Sanaria at the kitchen table of their home. Nearly 50 scientists, researchers, and innovators have joined the Sanaria team. With grant funding from the National Institutes of Health and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, we built our clinical manufacturing facility and our insectory in Rockville, Maryland. 

Why Crowdfunding?

Grants and Awards from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the National Institutes of Health, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation through the PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative, and the US Department of Defense and others have supported Sanaria since its founding in 2003. The recent government sequester reduced our access to funds that would have otherwise been available for projects such as SporoBot™. Grants from private and public institutions continue to support our ongoing research and clinical trials at home and overseas in Africa and Europe. But the processes in place to seek multi-million dollar grants to fund new projects, such as SporoBot™, can take years to process, and they are not guaranteed. Just last year, a grant for SporoBot was denied due to the government sequester. We at Sanaria feel a strong sense of urgency, and after years of progress, our goal of elimination is in sight. We could wait until public funding and economic conditions improve, but waiting comes at the cost of  thousands of lives. 

Every 60 seconds someone dies from malaria, usually an infant or child. Waiting is not an option for us. This is why we invite you to contribute to the creation of SporoBot™. All funds received from the campaign will be dedicated to completing SporoBot™. If everyone gives a little to reach our goal, we are that much closer to saving millions of lives.

Why partner with us?

ELIMINATE MALARIA: In 1977, a vaccine led to the eradication of smallpox from the world. In 1988, two vaccines were deployed to facilitate the elimination of polio, which should be eradicated in the next few years. Today, vaccines have led to near-elimination of other diseases such as tetanus and measles. Let's make malaria next. 

ELIMINATE SUFFERING: What movement is more worthwhile or inspiring than taking part in the permanent alleviation of suffering and death from a terrible disease?

IMPACT SCIENCE: Advance science with us as we change the face of medicine, bio-engineering, and public health.

MAKE HISTORY: Help eliminate a disease that has been one of the world’s biggest killers.

Please join us

Support the movement by making your contribution to our campaign and share the story. Your contribution can be any amount you choose, and is not restricted to the specific perk levels we have built. This is a new opportunity to affect real, historic change of unprecedented magnitude.

Most importantly, if we succeed in this campaign and develop SporoBot™, your contribution could impact hundreds of millions of people. You will be recognized as someone who has made a lasting positive change in the world.

Visit our website to learn more about our team and get involved!


Find This Campaign On
raised by 535 people in 1 month
18% funded
No time left
$250,000 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on June 5, 2014
Select a Perk
  • $5USD
    High Five!

    Virtual high five! Be a part of the movement and history.

    54 claimed
  • $10USD
    High Resolution Package

    6 digital high resolution photos of the development of SporoBot™ and PfSPZ Vaccine.

    52 claimed
  • $25USD
    SporoBot Mug + Microfiber Wipe

    Drink your coffee in the morning knowing you helped eliminate malaria. Microfiber wipe included for polishing. Plus the High Resolution Package. For international shipping please add an additional $10.

    106 claimed
  • $39USD

    A SporoBot™ T-shirt, offered exclusively during the campaign plus the High Resolution Package. For international shipping please add an additional $10. If you select this perk please email us at sporobot@sanaria.com to let us know your t-shirt size.

    51 claimed
  • $39USD
    Team Malaria Robotics T-Shirt

    Join the Sanaria and Kite team officially and show your support for the elimination of malaria with your very own Malaria Robotics Team Shirt. Plus receive the High Resolution Package. For international shipping please add an additional $10. If you select this perk please email us at sporobot@sanaria.com to let us know your t-shirt size and color.

    13 claimed
  • $60USD
    SporoBot™ Mug + Kite™ Bottle

    Kite™ is excited to support Sanaria's efforts to develop SporoBot™. Show your support and receive a SporoBot™ mug, a Kite™ water bottle, and the High Resolution Package. For international shipping please add an additional $15.

    34 claimed

    One-On-One with the CEO

    Ever wonder what it takes to be a great CEO? Want to learn more about what it takes to develop a malaria vaccine? Want to know what it will take to bring it to Africa? Here is your chance for a 15 minute one-on-one call (video if possible) with Sanaria's CEO, Dr. Stephen L. Hoffman.

    8 out of 8 claimed
  • $100USD
    The Do-Good Reward

    When you contribute $100, $10 goes to global good. You choose between four fantastic causes: Supporting community health workers with The Earth Institute, fighting hunger with No Kid Hungry, protecting against malarious mosquitoes with Nothing But Nets, and helping to provide clean water with Agua Inc. Plus, you'll receive the High Resolution Photo Package of SporoBot's progress, a Sanaria mug, and two Sanaria bumper stickers as a proud member of our malaria fighting team.

    16 claimed
  • $125USD
    Swag Bundle

    This bundle pack includes 1 t-shirt, 1 mug, our High Resolution Package, and 2 bumper stickers. Don't have two cars? Share one with a friend and tell them you joined the movement to end malaria. For international shipping please add an additional $15. If you select this perk please email us at sporobot@sanaria.com to let us know your t-shirt size.

    22 claimed
  • $250USD
    Virtual Tour

    Access to an online virtual tour of the laboratories at the Sanaria headquarters in Rockville, MD, plus the High Resolution Package. Minimum of 4 needed.

    1 claimed
  • $250USD
    Ed's Chowder House (NYC)

    Help fight malaria and enjoy a chef's tasting menu for two with matching wines at Ed's Chowder House (NYC). Travel expenses and gratuity not included.

    1 out of 4 claimed
  • $250USD
    Bravo Dinner (Boston)

    Help fight malaria and enjoy a chef's tasting menu for two with matching wines at Bravo at the Musuem of Fine Arts (Boston). Travel expenses and gratuity not included.

    0 out of 1 claimed

    The Source (DC)

    Help fight malaria and enjoy a chef's tasting menu for two with matching wines at The Source at the Newseum (Washington DC). Travel expenses and gratuity not included.

    1 out of 1 claimed
  • $300USD
    LIMITED EDITION Mini-SporoBot™

    A 3D printed mini-model of a SporoBot™ prototype plus the High Resolution Package. For international shipping please add an additional $25.

    3 out of 10 claimed
  • $500USD

    A 3D printed mini-model of a SporoBot™ prototype plus the High Resolution Package. For international shipping please add an additional $25.

    4 out of 200 claimed
  • $500USD
    Strength Dinner

    Help fight malaria and receive dinner for two at your choice of a restaurant that is part of the Share Our Strength anti-hunger network. Travel expenses and gratuity not included.

    0 claimed
  • $1,000USD
    Tech Bundle

    This bundle pack includes a 3D printed mini-model of a Sporobot prototype, a SporoBot™ or PfSPZ Vaccine embedded campaign participation cube, and the High Resolution Package. For international shipping please add an additional $25.

    2 claimed
  • $2,500USD

    Virtual attendance at a 1 hour online symposium conducted by Dr. Hoffman.

    0 out of 100 claimed
  • $10,000USD
    Celebrity Chef Ed Brown

    Have celebrity Chef Ed Brown, from Ed's Chowder House in NYC, the Today Show and Iron Chef, come to your house anywhere in the mainland United States and cook a special dinner for 8 people. The meal must happen within one year of the campaign. Chef Brown is a supporter of the elimination of malaria and is contributing this special meal to join the movement.

    0 out of 1 claimed
  • $25,000USD
    Meet the Team

    A private lunch with Dr. Hoffman and Dr. Sim and a private tour of our facility. Domestic travel expenses included for one, contact us for more information about international travel.

    0 claimed
  • $50,000USD
    Trip to Africa

    Join our team on a trip to a clinical study site in Africa. Trip depends on specific details, contact us for more information.

    0 claimed
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