Bejing-based Sinovac Biotech [SVA:US] signed the contract with Instituto Butantan to conduct the phase III clinical trial of its COVID-19 vaccine in Brazil, involving 9,000 people, as reported by Caixin Global on June 13, citing Bloomberg. According to a Sinovac spokesman, the company still needs the approval from Brazilian regulators before conducting the trial. If approved, Sinovac will start the trial in Brazil in July while Butantan will license the Chinese vaccine and sell it in South American countries.
Out of the ten COVID-19 vaccines that reached the human clinical trials globally by early June, five were developed in China. However, in order to recruit at least thousands of participants who are still facing a high risk of infection required by the last stage of vaccine testing, Chinese medical companies have to seek partnerships overseas as China has almost controlled the COVID-19 pandemic. While Sinovac located Brazil as the testing ground, Tianjin-based CanSino Biologics [6185:HK] received permission last month from Health Canada to conduct its phase III clinical trial in the foreign nation. On May 22, CanSino released its phase I results in the international medical journal, the Lancet, demonstrating the effectiveness of the vaccine. After the release, Morgan Stanley [MS:US] raised the probability of success of the company’s vaccine increased from 20% to 60% and its stock target price from HKD102 to HKD258.