SCIO briefing on scientific research into COVID-19

The State Council Information Office held a press conference on April 27 in Beijing to brief the media about scientific research into COVID-19. April 29, 2020

Associated Press:

You've mentioned that China is cooperating with the U.S. and Germany to develop a vaccine. I heard that a German company called BioNTech is working together with a Chinese company, and the vaccine candidate is ready for human testing. Could you elaborate on their cooperation? What role does the Chinese side play? Will China join the Solidarity Trial launched by the WHO?

Yan Jinghua:

Drug development involves huge projects. Vaccines are broadly defined as drugs. The development of drugs and vaccines takes a lot of time and requires a massive investment. So usually good products are derived from cooperation among large companies. As you said just now, more and more international companies are cooperating on vaccine development. The cooperation you just mentioned is between two companies, BioNTech and China's Fosun Pharma. The future of their cooperation and the point at which clinical trials will be held depends on BioNTech's R&D progress.

As to the Solidarity Trial launched by the WHO, I think it's a very good idea. If realized, the initiative will strengthen our communication with other countries and help us greatly accelerate vaccine development. As researchers working on vaccine development, we hope international organizations, including the WHO, can maintain close communication and cooperation with each other, thereby improving global access to vaccines. Thank you.

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