Express Pharma

BioNTech sees UK trials on cancer vaccines starting this year: Ugur Sahin

The company wants these therapies, which are based on mRNA technology similar to the one that underpins its COVID-19 vaccine, to soon become a regular treatment for cancer patients

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Clinical trials for BioNTech’s cancer vaccines should start this year in Britain, marking an important step towards their possible sale on the open market, informed the German company’s top executive Ugur Sahin.

BioNTech, known for its COVID vaccine with US partner Pfizer, is currently deciding which types of cancer it wants to test its personalised cancer immunotherapies on and the locations where it will conduct the trials, Sahin said.

The company wants these therapies, which are based on messenger RNA (mRNA) technology similar to the one that underpins its COVID-19 vaccine, to soon become a regular treatment for cancer patients.

“We believe that this should be possible for large amounts of patients before 2030,” Sahin said.

The technology for this type of therapy has come a long way, he said.

“In 2014 we needed three to six months to create an individualised cancer vaccine, now we need four to six weeks. Our aim is to get it significantly under four weeks.”

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