- The Trump administration is alleged to have offered $1 billion for exclusive access to the Covid-19 vaccine.
- CureVac has denied receiving any offers from the U.S. government.
- CureVac is currently in a race with other German biotech companies to develop an effective coronavirus treatment.
The Trump administration apparently offered a substantial amount of money to CureVac, a German biopharmaceutical company, to get exclusive access to a potential Covid-19 vaccine. This is according to a report published by the Welt am Sonntag German newspaper. The story has drawn sharp criticism from German lawmakers.
Concerns have been raised about the possible influence of European companies by the United States government. The Trump administration is alleged to have offered $1 billion for the Covid-19 vaccine access privilege. The drug would only be made available in the United States.
Primary CureVac stakeholders, including Dietmar Hopp have, however, declared that the development of such a vaccine will be for the benefit of all affected nations. According to German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, this the wrong time for selfish protectionist and opportunistic endeavors stating, “We cannot allow a situation where others want to exclusively acquire the results of their research. International co-operation is important now, not national self-interest.”
CureVac CEO Daniel Menichella resigned just a few weeks after a meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, and other pharmaceutical company representatives. No details about the meeting have been disclosed. Before his departure, Menichella was quoted saying that his company was just months away from developing the vaccine.
“To make it clear again on coronavirus: CureVac has not received from the U.S. government or related entities an offer before, during and since the Task Force meeting in the White House on March 2. CureVac rejects all allegations from press.”
The firm has underlined that it will refrain from commenting on wild speculation and instead focus on the task of developing mRNA-based vaccines.
Richard Grenell, the U.S. ambassador to Germany, says that the whole thing has been overplayed. Going by his statement, the United States is in talks with a lot of other companies and will continue to reach out to firms that can provide a solution to the coronavirus scourge.
CureVac Set to Begin Trials
The Tübingen-based company is currently working on a vaccine, and trials are set to begin in the coming weeks. Two candidates will be selected for the clinical tests. An experimental vaccine will most likely be available by June or July. If trials are successful, regulation and mass production will follow.
CureVac is currently in a race with other German biotech companies, such as BioNTech, to develop an effective coronavirus treatment. It also has a formidable rival in Moderna, a U.S. pharmaceutical research company.
The company is working on an effective mRNA therapeutics-based solution that will allow the body to produce antigens targeting the Covid-19 genetic makeup. Such a capability will exploit its replication mechanism and halt its spread.