BioNTech, Fosun Pharma, Pfizer working on COVID-19 vaccine. Clinical testing in Germany in April

BioNTech SE said Monday its development a potential vaccine to induce immunity and prevent COVID-19 infection in response to the growing global health threat posed by the disease has seen rapid progress. BioNTech’s product candidate, BNT162, is a potential first-in-class mRNA vaccine in the worldwide effort against COVID-19.

BioNTech says it plans intends to start clinical testing for BNT162 in late April 2020, as part of a global clinical development program in Europe (commencing in Germany), the United States and China.

As part of its global development program, BioNTech announced yesterday a strategic alliance with Fosun Pharma to jointly develop its COVID-19 vaccine in China. In addition, BioNTech is also working with Pfizer to develop the vaccine outside China.

BioNTech said plans to manufacture the vaccine for clinical trials along with its partner Polymun at BioNTech’s state-of-the-art GMP certified mRNA manufacturing facilities in Europe, and is preparing to ramp up production for global supply in collaboration with its partners.

Founder and CEO of BioNTech, Ugur Sahin, M.D., said: “We feel a duty to exploit our full technology and immunotherapy expertise to help address the COVID-19 pandemic emergency. We are working closely together with regulatory agencies and our existing collaborators in the infectious disease field, including Pfizer, to rapidly initiate trials in order to make a vaccine available to the public as quickly as possible worldwide. In addition, we are working on a novel therapeutics approach for those patients who have already been infected – we plan to disclose more on that effort in the coming weeks.”

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