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CureVac Secures Bayer as a Partner for Its Coronavirus Vaccine

By Brian Orelli, PhD - Jan 7, 2021 at 2:04PM

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Sometimes you need a little help from a big brother.

CureVac ( CVAC -6.40% ) is getting a little help from its fellow German drugmaker Bayer ( BAYR.Y 0.40% ) on the development and potential global launch for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate CVnCoV.

Through the deal, announced today, Bayer will assist CureVac with everything from running clinical trials to gaining regulatory approvals to managing the supply chain. CureVac will be in charge in the EU while Bayer has options to lead the regulatory authorizations in undisclosed areas outside of the EU.

CureVac and Bayer didn't disclose the financial terms of the deal, so it isn't clear if CureVac will benefit beyond the ability to sell more vaccine than it could on its own. Even if there's no up-front payment, the deal still looks like a smart move by CureVac, which is planning on going from no products on the market to supplying hundreds of millions of CVnCoV doses around the world. Bayer, on the other hand, has plenty of experience, having developed drugs for more than a century.

Gloved hands giving an injection into an arm

Image source: Getty Images.

The added help from Bayer is especially important considering CureVac is trailing fellow mRNA vaccine companies Moderna and BioNTech, which have already gained regulatory authorizations for their vaccines in multiple territories. Last month, CureVac started its phase 2b/3 clinical trial, consisting of a 4,000-participant phase 2b portion followed by the phase 3 portion that will enroll 32,500 participants.

The company didn't give a time frame for when investors should expect data from the final phase 3 portion, but combining the phase 2b and 3 clinical trials should help CureVac move into the final phase seamlessly. Hopefully Bayer has a few pointers to help move things along even quicker.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis – even one of our own – helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.

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Stocks Mentioned

CureVac N.V. Stock Quote
CureVac N.V.
CVAC
$40.79 (-6.40%) $-2.79
Bayer Stock Quote
Bayer
BAYR.Y
$12.59 (0.40%) $0.05
Moderna, Inc. Stock Quote
Moderna, Inc.
MRNA
$265.33 (-13.49%) $-41.39
BioNTech SE Stock Quote
BioNTech SE
BNTX
$279.83 (-18.67%) $-64.23

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

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