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As COVID-19 vaccines progress, science and policy questions become more urgent

GSK-Sanofi deal underscores importance of tested technologies, manufacturing capacity in search for vaccine

The collaboration announced Tuesday between Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline highlights the importance of bringing tested technologies and large-scale manufacturing capacity to the search for safe, effective COVID-19 vaccines.

The partnership, which combines the strengths of two of the largest vaccine manufacturers, also provides an opportunity to consider some of the practical aspects of moving from the lab to mass manufacturing.

For example, Sanofi (Euronext:SAN; NASDAQ:SNY) expects that two doses of its adjuvanted vaccine will be required to provide protection against COVID-19.

As vaccine candidates advance toward larger-scale efficacy tests, the need to address scientific and policy challenges is becoming more urgent.

Scientific questions that industry and regulators will need to answer quickly include how to determine the appropriate doses and regimens to be tested and how to design trials in ways that balance the need for speed with the time required to answer critical questions such as the length of protection a vaccine provides.

“Our role is to develop as quickly as we can a new vaccine and to scale up production capacity. But

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