The Trump administration has reportedly named five drugmakers that it expects to be the most likely to produce a viable COVID-19 vaccine, according to The New York Times (Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Moderna Inc. (MRNA), Merck & Co. Inc. (MCK), and Pfizer in combination with BioNTech SE (BNTX). With the exception of Merck, Pfizer, and BioNTech, shares of those companies were up in afternoon trading on Wednesday. Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc. (INO), an early vaccine contender, was not included in the Times' report. Its stock was down 10.8%. Much of the nation's hopes for an economic recovery are tied to the development of a vaccine that can successfully prevent people from becoming infected with COVID-19. The administration has tirelessly promoted the idea that a vaccine can be developed by the end of the year; however, executives at J&J and Merck have pointed out that the research and development process can take years to develop a safe, efficacious vaccine. Merck CEO Ken Frazier recently told the Financial Times a 12- to 18-month timeline is "very aggressive."), which cited people familiar with the matter. This includes AstraZeneca (AZN.LN) in combination with Oxford University,
-Jaimy Lee; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
June 03, 2020 15:07 ET (19:07 GMT)
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