It is not just the pandemic that will experience two waves. If the first vaccines to emerge will help mitigate the pandemic, there will also be a second generation of better optimized vaccines, anticipates the big boss of IMV.
• Read also: The planet’s labs on alert
The Quebec and Halifax-based biopharmaceutical company hopes to launch human trials of its own COVID-19 vaccine candidate by the end of the year, which puts it rather in the middle of the pack. “Race” for the discovery of a vaccine.
The most advanced companies at the present time have chosen technologies that made it possible to go quickly, but which do not necessarily guarantee the greatest efficiency, raises the CEO of IMV, Frédéric Ors.
“They may not be the best vaccines, but it will allow us, perhaps, to reduce the intensity of the crisis, or to get through it. Eventually, we will need vaccines that deliver the best possible proposition, ”he said, in an interview with The newspaper.
“We are really not in that race, we are in a race that is a little different, which is: how can we develop a vaccine against the coronavirus which, in the long term , will provide a good vaccination for the population? »Continues the old Medicago.
What matters from the start for his team is ” [d’]to bring something more ”than the others, insists Mr. Ors.
- Listen to the microbiologist and professor at the Faculty of Medicine of Laval University Denis Leclerc with Benoit Dutrizac on QUB Radio:
This “something more” is expertise in the development of immunotherapies against cancer and technologies aimed at stimulating the weakened immune system of the elderly and sick.
IMV’s vaccine candidate against the coronavirus, DPX-COVID-19, benefits from this expertise and precisely carries the hope of a vaccine whose effect would be greater and more lasting for this category of people.
“We are not in the race to be the first. We are in a race to develop a vaccine which could be more effective in the elderly and immunosuppressed people and, also, which could have a longer duration of protection, ”summarizes Frédéric Ors.
“I see it as completely complementary with another approach that says we need the vaccines as quickly as possible,” he says.
Soon clinical trials
IMV, a company based in Quebec City and Halifax, said Thursday it still needs a few weeks before it begins testing in humans, in order to complete preclinical studies. Phases 1 and 2 of the clinical trials will be combined, which will speed up the process.
The company recently received confirmation of new federal financial support of $ 5.4 million, bringing federal assistance provided for its coronavirus vaccine project to $ 10 million.
In addition, an agreement with a global partner could allow it to produce millions of doses of its vaccine from two additional production sites in India and Europe.