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Mexico said Tuesday it has signed contracts with three US and China drug companies to conduct clinical trials of potential coronavirus vaccines in the hardest-hit country.
The Latin American nation with the third highest COVID-19 death toll in the world announced that Janssen Pharmaceuticals, part of Johnson & Johnson, CanSino Biologics and Walvax Biotechnology, will begin phase 3 studies in September.
They will join the French company Sanofi, which is conducting end-stage trials of a potential coronavirus vaccine in a country of more than 128 million people.
After infection rates fell in Europe due to lockdown measures, pharmaceutical companies reached out to the hardest-hit countries like Mexico, Brazil and South Africa to conduct large-scale vaccination trials with volunteers.
The government wants to ensure that "Mexico has access to a coronavirus vaccine in good time," Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said at a press conference.
He said Mexico is in direct contact with 15 of the most advanced laboratories in the field.
The country has reported 53,000 deaths from the virus – just behind the US and Brazil – though the government notes that it is not as badly affected, adjusted for population size.
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Mexico Signs Coronavirus Vaccine Trials Contracts (2020, Aug 11)
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