Within the partnership, Sanofi will contribute its S-protein COVID-19 antigen based on recombinant DNA technology, while GlaxoSmithKline will implement its proven pandemic adjuvant technology.
According to the latest data from the World Health Organization, there are 70 coronavirus vaccines under development. Three of them have already enrolled in the stage of human trials. On Tuesday, two more companies joined the COVID-19 vaccine race. World’s major pharma companies, French Sanofi (NASDAQ: SNY) and British GlaxoSmithKline, partnered to develop a coronavirus vaccine.
Within the partnership, Sanofi will contribute its S-protein COVID-19 antigen based on recombinant DNA technology, while GlaxoSmithKline will implement its proven pandemic adjuvant technology. This combination has already worked well in a number of vaccines available today.
Sanofi CEO Paul Hudson said:
“As the world faces this unprecedented global health crisis, it is clear that no one company can go it alone. That is why Sanofi is continuing to complement its expertise and resources with our peers, such as GSK, with the goal to create and supply sufficient quantities of vaccines that will help stop this virus.”
GlaxoSmithKline CEO Emma Walmsley stated:
“This collaboration brings together two of the world’s largest vaccines companies. By combining our scientific expertise, technologies and capabilities, we believe that we can help accelerate the global effort to develop a vaccine to protect as many people as possible from Covid-19.”
Notably, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), part of the office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, will back the vaccine candidate. Besides, the pharma giants have set up a Joint Task Force to accelerate the COVID-19 vaccine development.
According to the press release, phase 1 clinical trials will start in in late 2020. By the second half of 2021, the companies are planning to produce hundreds of millions of doses.
Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline Stocks Climbed
After Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline partnered, their shares soared. Sanofi (SNY) stock closed 3.58% up yesterday, at $45.97. Since the beginning of 2020, SNY stock has seen both ups and downs. For instance, the lowest mark of Sanofi shares this year made up $38.02 on March 20. On February 6, Sanofi stock reached the record $51.66.
GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK) stock ended yesterday’s session in the green as well. It closed at $40.38, 3.7% up from the previous $38.94 close. After hours, it jumped by another 1.88%.
Different Approaches to COVID-19 Vaccine
Each company involved in the vaccine development applies its own approach and technology, which increases the chances of sooner meeting the global demand and finding the vaccine.
For example, Moderna is now testing a messenger-RNA vaccine that instructs human cells to produce virus-fighting proteins — antibodies. Inovio Pharmaceuticals believes that its DNA vaccine can deliver optimized DNA into cells to trigger an immune response.
Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline have also had different technologies before teaming up. But now they will unite efforts and create a new common pathway to fight coronavirus.