Covid: Sanofi stops trials on their mRNA vaccine

Published by Laurent P. · Updated on 28 September 2021 at 15h17 · Published on 28 September 2021 at 14h51
This Tuesday September 28, Sanofi has announced they are halting clinical trials as for Covid mRNA vaccine as developed by American biotech Translate Bio, saying it is too late to reach the market. Yet, the vaccine was promising according to the study's preliminary results.

This is bad news for Sanofi in the fight against Covid! This Tuesday September 28, the French laboratory has announced they are halting the development of the mRNA vaccine against coronavirus, created in partnership with American biotech Translate Bio, considering it will reach the market "too late". But, the laboratory has said to keep continuing the phase 3 of the clinical trial of their candidate vaccine intially studied alongside GSK, against Covid, in order to be commercialized soon.

"The need is not to create new COVID-19 RNA vaccines but to equip France and Europe with an arsenal of messenger RNA vaccines for a future pandemic, for new diseases", Thomas Triomphe, vice-president of Sanofi's vaccines division, said. He went on, saying they are halting the development of this second vaccine because "there is no public health need now for an another messenger RNA vaccine against Covid-19".

Yet, in a release published on Friday March 12, 2021, the French laboratory issued a release stating they are launching human clinical trials of their second vaccine. A solution developed by Sanofi and American company Translate Bio as they "initiate Phase 1/2 clinical trial of mRNA COVID-19 vaccine candidate".

And with rather conclusive results for the first two phases: the vaccine being 91 to 100% effective in the 415 participants, two weeks after the second injection, as the laboratory explained, saying no side effect has been reported either. Clinical trials in first then second phase aimed at checking the vaccine was not dangerous and at seeing how effective it was.

But this vaccine “could be of use at a later stage all the more if the fight against variants was to continue” he explained. He detailed “this technology, developed with the biotech Translate Bio, with which we have been associated since 2018, has shown the production of high concentrations of antibodies in preclinical studies”. This is a vaccine that uses – like Pfizer or Moderna – the mRNA technology.

But it is not because Sanofi halts the trial the laboratory says they are defeated and can no longer work on the technology. And for good reason, the laboratory also said they wish to develop other vaccines with this technology, without side effects. In Sanofi's aim, a monovalent vaccine against flu and easily storable, which clinical trials are being completed. Another clinical trial - on a quadrivalent vaccine - are to begin in 2022.

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