The German laboratory BioNTech wants to apply the promising messenger RNA technology to malaria by launching trials for a vaccine next year. Hopes are high around this technique, which could in the future make it possible to fight against other diseases such as cancer or AIDS.
After developing a pioneering vaccine against Covid-19 with Pfizer, BioNTech is therefore relying on messenger RNA to curb malaria (or malaria), a disease against which no vaccine has been found so far.
“BioNTech plans to develop the first mRNA vaccine for the prevention of malaria” to be produced on the African continent, the company said in a statement Monday.
“The probability of success is high,” assured Ugur Sahin, director and co-founder of BioNTech, a pioneering laboratory in mRNA research.
With the development of the SARS-CoV-2 messenger RNA vaccine and its use on a global scale, laboratories have built a very large database on the safety of this process. The idea is therefore to extend this technology to other diseases for which medicine has not yet found a solution.
In total, BioNTech is working on vaccines against nine infectious diseases and is working on 15 cancer treatment programs, with results expected in the coming years.
Strong exploitation potential
Platforms already exist for research against HIV and in the field of oncology, for which the messenger RNA technique was already widely tested before the arrival of Covid-19. And the research is likely to extend to other pathologies, explained Giuseppe Pantaleo, head of the Immunology and Allergy Service of the CHUV, in La Matinale de la RTS on Thursday.
“We don’t have a cytomegalovirus vaccine yet. This is another potential target. There is also no therapeutic vaccine against hepatitis B. There is a very significant exploitation potential, certainly. that it will be investigated. But a sine qua non is to find a solution for the Covid pandemic, otherwise it will be very difficult. “
Sophie Iselin / gma