Global disease outbreaks are a huge business opportunity for Big Pharma companies.
The coronavirus is a worldwide concern, global stocks and oil prices have experienced a fall, but some industries are before a big marketing opportunity that can give them a substantial short-term bump.
According to reports from CNN Business, big drugmakers like Inovio, Johnson & Johnson, Novavax, Moderna, and GSK are all working on coronavirus treatments. Since January 30th, when the World Health Organization declared that the new coronavirus epidemic now constitutes a public health emergency of international concern, all of these biotech companies have been thriving to create an efficient cure with existing antiviral medications.
Gilead Sciences, a biopharmaceutical firm with an experimental drug called remdesivir that is used to treat the Ebola virus, while Biotech company AbbVie has said to have seen promising results for treating the Wuhan coronavirus with a mixture of two of its HIV medications and Tamiflu.
Inovio Pharmaceuticals, according to reporting from Katie Thomas in The New York Times, received a grant of up to $9 million to develop a coronavirus vaccine from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, a group whose aim is to speed vaccines to market. Moderna, which is working with Dr. Graham’s team at the N.I.H., received a similar grant, as did researchers at the University of Queensland in Australia.
“It may be more than a year until a vaccine is available,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the US National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, but Richard Hatchett, chief executive of the epidemic preparedness coalition, added: “They may not help in the very early stages of an outbreak, but if we’re able to develop vaccines in time, they will be an asset later.”
According to TIME Magazine, health officials say a vaccine version may take three months to be available for the first stages of human testing while developing an effective vaccine generally takes years.