A San Diego biotech company just received a $9 million grant to develop a vaccine for the coronavirus.
Inovio Pharmaceuticals received a grant from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). The grant builds on Inovio’s existing partnership with CEPI, in which the company was granted in April 2018 an award of up to $56 million to develop vaccines for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Lassa fever.
Inovio was able to receive the sequence of the virus from the Chinese authorities and designed a new vaccine in about two hours, according to Dr. Kate Broderick, Senior Vice President of Research and Development at Inovio.
It is now being manufactured so that it can be tested in animals and then go to clinical trials.
"Those $9 million will allow us to push that research and development into the clinic and allow us to give help to those patients in the outbreak region," said Dr. Broderick.
Inovio estimates the vaccine will be available for human testing by early summer.
Inovio Pharmaceuticals is located in Sorrento Valley.