CureVac says in talks with potential vaccine development partners

FILE PHOTO: An employee of German biopharmaceutical company CureVac, demonstrates research workflow on a vaccine for the coronavirus (COVID-19) disease at a laboratory in Tuebingen, Germany, March 12, 2020. REUTERS/Andreas Gebert

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - CureVac 5CV.DE is still in discussions with pharma majors to find a potential partner for its experimental COVID-19 vaccine, the German biotech firm's chief executive said on Thursday.

“The location of the partner does not play a role. We are looking for a partner who is best placed to support us,” Chief Executive Franz-Werner Haas told a media briefing.

He said that a global infrastructure to monitor possible side effects after market launch was among the aspects to be addressed by a partner, but he added that CureVac may also outsource this task to a service provider.

Haas said the group was close to launching a Phase III trial with about 36,000 participants to find out whether its vaccine can prevent infections and that it plans to produce 300-400 million vaccine doses next year.

Reporting by Ludwig Burger and Caroline Copley; Editing by Riham Alkousaa