Inovio Pharmaceuticals INO Stock News

Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: INO) is screaming for the top in the market this morning, trading on premarket gains of more than 11%. The gains come after the company announced news surrounding the development of a vaccine for the coronavirus. Here’s what’s happening:

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INO Stock Flies On Coronavirus Vaccine Development News

In a press release issued this morning, Inovio Pharmaceuticals said that it has been awarded a grant. The grant, valued at up to $9 million, surrounds the development of a vaccine against the recently emerged strain of coronavirus.

In the release, INO said that the initial funding will support the preclinical and clinical development of the vaccine through Phase 1 of human testing. The vaccine, which will be known as INO-4800 is matched to the outbreak strain.

In the release, the company said that it was also recently awarded a grant of up to $56 million from CEPI. This grant surrounds the development of vaccines against Lassa fever and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, which is also caused by coronavirus.

The company said that it was chosen based on the ideal suitability of its DNA medicine platform, proven vaccine development capabilities, and a strong record of quickly generating promising countermeasures against previous pandemic threats.

It’s also worth mentioning that INO is the first to advance its vaccine against MERS-CoV, a related coronavirus, into human trials. At the moment, the company is preparing to initiate Phase 2 development of the vaccine in the Middle East, where most of these viral outbreaks have occurred.

In a statement, Richard Hatchett, CEO at CEPI, had the following to offer:

Given the rapid global spread of the 2019-nCoV virus the world needs to act quickly and in unity to tackle this disease. Our intention with this work is to leverage our work with Inovio on the MERS coronavirus and rapid response platform to speed up vaccine development.

The above statement was followed up by Dr. J. Joseph Kim, President and CEO at INO. Here’s what he had to say:

We’re extremely honored to expand our partnership with CEPI to tackle this new threat to global public health. Our DNA medicine platform represents the best modern day approach to combatting emerging pandemics. We have already demonstrated positive clinical outcomes with our vaccine against MERS-CoV, another coronavirus. Importantly, following the Zika viral infection outbreak, Inovio and our partners developed a vaccine that went from bench to human testing in just seven months – the fastest vaccine development on record in recent decades. We believe we can further improve upon this accelerated timeline to meet the current challenge of the emerging coronavirus 2019-nCoV.

Why This Is Sending The Stock Skyward

The truth of the matter is that coronavirus is just starting to hit the mainstream news. The virus is a relatively new one with deadly consequences, but has mostly been found in Asia and the Middle East.

With the recent introduction of the coronavirus to the United States, the largest economy in the world, funding is starting to flood the space in order to find treatments and vaccines. The fact that Innovio Pharmaceuticals was chosen as a beneficiary to this funding is a big deal.

This ultimately means that the company now has the ability to work on a new product with little to no out of pocket cost, as the bill is being footed by the grant. If all goes well, the company will soon develop a vaccine that is effective against the coronavirus, giving it a large opportunity for revenue generation.

All in all, there’s very good reason to be excited about INO today.

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