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A vaccine to halt the coronavirus pandemic could be available as early as this year for vulnerable groups such as health-care workers, even faster than initially thought, according to a key group at the heart of the global development effort.
The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, which is funding nine different coronavirus vaccine projects, has previously suggested a shot could be ready within 12 to 18 months, an already ambitious target. That assessment didn’t account for the possibility of companies working closely together to accelerate the process, faster enrollment in human trials and other factors, according to Richard Hatchett, the head of the Oslo-based organization.
“These are all things we are looking at now as potential opportunities to perhaps deliver vaccines even faster than the 12 to 18 months we were discussing,” he said on a call Monday.
As the number of coronavirus infections globally nears 3 million, the pressure is growing to come up with therapies and vaccines to combat the contagion. Dozens of companies around the world are pursuing a vaccine, among them Sanofi, Johnson & Johnson and Moderna Inc.
27,631 in U.S.Most new cases today
-17% Change in MSCI World Index of global stocks since Wuhan lockdown, Jan. 23
-1.089 Change in U.S. treasury bond yield since Wuhan lockdown, Jan. 23
-0.5% Global GDP Tracker (annualized), March