Germany's CureVac is joining hands with Sanofi Pasteur on a €150 million deal to develop new vaccines against infectious diseases. In addition, the platform mRNA vaccine company will join forces with In Cell Art and Sanofi Pasteur to pursue a related $33 million DARPA research program aimed at creating a universal vaccine-tech platform for prophylactic and therapeutic mRNA-based vaccines that could be used to combat infectious diseases.
In the DARPA program, In Cell Art will combine its nanotech delivery tech with CureVac's expertise in mRNA vaccines and Sanofi Pasteur's powerhouse in-house vaccine group.
In exchange for the rights to a certain set of pathogens that CureVac provides Sanofi, the German biotech stands to get up to €101.5 million in milestones if the vaccine giant develops a new therapeutic or prophylactic vaccine with a pathogen and up to €150.5 million if Sanofi can do both with a single pathogen.
Karl-Josef Kallen, head of R&D at CureVac, called the development pact a potential game change for the vaccine field. Ingmar Hoerr, CEO of CureVac, said, "This multi-year collaboration will allow us to significantly strengthen our technology platform and to scale it up for commercial vaccination purposes."
- here's the press release