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Chinese vaccine manufacturer CanSino Biologics sets up shop in Geneva to launch its inhaled Covid vaccine

This first inhaled Covid vaccine against was approved by Chinese authorities a month ago. This technology has the potential to protect against other respiratory infections as well.

The GGBa and the DG DERI supported CanSino Biologics in setting up its activities in Geneva. From left to right : Denis Cavin (DG DERI), Shun Zhou (GGBa), Pierre Morgon, Lidia Kebbab, Chao Shoubai, Thomas Bohn (GGBa), Helen Mao, Jean-Denis Shu
The GGBa and the DG DERI supported CanSino Biologics in setting up its activities in Geneva. From left to right : Denis Cavin (DG DERI), Shun Zhou (GGBa), Pierre Morgon, Lidia Kebbab, Chao Shoubai, Thomas Bohn (GGBa), Helen Mao, Jean-Denis Shu

CanSino Biologics has developed an anti-Covid vaccine (Convidecia) administered by injection in a single dose with technology comparable to that of Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca. Alongside this injectable version, CanSino has developed an inhalable version of this vaccine with the same formulation based on adenovirus. Pierre Morgon, vaccine specialist and director of the Swiss subsidiary of the company, explains the specificities of this mucosal vaccine and CanSino’s plans for Switzerland.

“With injectable vaccines, we obtain the production of antibodies circulating in the blood, in particular IgG, which block the virus. But they do not prevent viral replication and infection since these occur in the respiratory tract. The mucous membranes have another type of antibody, IgA, that injectable vaccines produce in small quantities. An inhaled vaccine generates the production of all three types of antibodies.”

The GGBa and the Directorate General for Economic Development, Research and Innovation of the Canton of Geneva supported CanSino in opening a subsidiary in Western Switzerland to carry out its developments in Europe. CanSino should take a year for the trials and another year for the regulatory process.

By settling in Geneva, the company is also seeking to get closer to the WHO, the GAVI Vaccine Alliance and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. CanSino is also developing a tuberculosis vaccine administered by inhalation.

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