Indonesia's Kalbe partners with S. Korean company for joint vaccine research

By Lim Chang-won Posted : May 27, 2020, 16:13 Updated : May 27, 2020, 16:13

[Courtesy of Genexine]

SEOUL -- PT Kalbe Farma, a pharmaceutical, healthcare and nutrition company in Indonesia, forged a partnership with Genexine, a South Korean company involved in the development of GX-19, a DNA vaccine material for COVID-19.

Genexine, a clinical-stage biotechnology company, said that its cooperation with Kalbe would enable GX-19's clinical trials in Southeast Asia. The South Korean company has been involved in South Korea's state-commissioned research consortium which started the first testing of a vaccine candidate on monkeys in March to check the safety of GX-19.

The consortium, which also groups the state-run Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology (KAIST), Pohang University of Science and Technology (POSTECH) and the International Vaccine Institute (IVI), said on May 6 that it has confirmed the generation of antibodies that can neutralize a novel coronavirus. It would push ahead with clinical trials on humans in June.

The South Korean government has pledged financial support for the production of therapeutic materials and research on clinical trials. Researchers have been involved in quick experiments to check the efficacy of various anti-viral drugs, including Remdesivir, a broad-spectrum antiviral medication developed by Gilead Sciences to treat Ebola virus disease.
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