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The European Commission announced on Tuesday that it had completed exploratory talks with Franco-Austrian biotechnology laboratory Valneva about the possible purchase of up to 60 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine.

The EU executive has already signed contracts with six other laboratories and is currently in talks with the US company Novavax to secure 200 million cans.

Once negotiations with Novavax and Valneva are concluded, Europe would have contracts with eight different laboratories for more than 2.5 billion doses.

“That way we can maximize our chances that all citizens have access to safe and effective vaccines by the end of 2021,” said EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides.

The EU said the proposed contract with Valneva would allow all 27 EU member states to buy 30 million cans together initially, with an option for another 30 million.

Valneva’s vaccine was developed using inactivated virus based technology, as opposed to the mRNA method used by Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna.

Valneva announced the start of human clinical trials in mid-December and the UK has already ordered doses.

EU approval is expected in the final months of this year.

The EU has already signed contracts with AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, Sanofi-GSK, Pfizer-BioNTech, CureVac and Moderna.

So far, only the vaccines Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna have been approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA). The European regulator will review the AstraZeneca vaccine in late January.

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© 2021 AFP

Quote: EU approaches agreement with Valvena for Covid-19 vaccine (2021, January 12), accessed on January 12, 2021 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-01-eu-nears-valvena-covid- vaccine.html

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