“We have an algorithm which we designed, and we put the DNA sequence into our algorithm and came up with the vaccine in that short amount of time,” Inovio’s research and development director Dr. Trevor Smith told KVUE.
Inovio’s vaccine for COVID-19, as health officials have named the virus, could be ready as early as this summer. Inovio’s stock jumped to $5.32 a share a few days after the company announced it was selected to work on a coronavirus vaccine. Shares are now at $3.34, back to where they were a month ago. The American company is partnering with Beijing Advaccine, a Chinese company, to work on the vaccine.
“Inovio’s participation in this developing effort is based on the ideal suitability of its DNA medicine platform to rapidly develop vaccines against emerging viruses with pandemic potential, proven vaccine development capabilities, and a strong track record of rapidly generating promising countermeasures against previous pandemic threats,” the company said in a statement on Jan. 30. “Inovio was the first to advance its vaccine (INO-4700) against MERS-CoV, a related coronavirus, into evaluation in humans.”
Another U.S. company, Maryland-based Novavax, is aiming to make a coronavirus vaccine in as little as three months, although such vaccines can take years to develop. The company made an Ebola vaccine in 90 days.
Please use the sharing tools found via the share button at
the top or side of articles. Copying articles to share with others is a breach
of FT.com T&Cs
Policy. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to buy
additional rights. Subscribers may share up to 10 or 20 articles per month
using the gift article service. More information can be found here.
CORONAVIRUS MAPPED: THE LATEST FIGURES AS THE OUTBREAK SPREADS
The humanitarian costs of the coronavirus outbreak have continued to mount, with nearly 60,000 people infected in China alone, where the outbreak originated. The number of people who have been confirmed to have died as a result of the virus has now reached 1,384. It has hit a growing list of companies by sapping consumer demand in key regions and disrupting supply chains. Chinese stocks, the travel sector and energy funds have also been hit.
SOURCE: Steve Bernard and Cale Tilford (Financial Times)