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Major AUD$280 million investment to deliver mRNA 2.0

Lab research and testing

Sanofi, one of the world’s largest vaccine innovators, has partnered with the Queensland Government to inject AUD$280 million into next generation mRNA vaccine research in Queensland.

The Translational Science Hub announced today by Sanofi and Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk will link world-class researchers in Queensland with scientists at the Sanofi mRNA Centre of Excellence in France and the US. This will create a unique global vaccines R&D network focused on mRNA technology and translational science.

This first-of-its-kind partnership, which includes the University of Queensland and Griffith University, will place Queensland at the forefront of vaccine development and biomedical research in Australia. The Translational Science Hub will initially focus on the evaluation of a new generation of mRNA vaccines and the development of a world-first mRNA vaccine for chlamydia, a sexually transmissible infection (STI) of increasing public health concern because of its association with infertility, pelvic inflammatory disease, and pregnancy complications.

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mRNA is expected to herald a new generation of vaccines that instruct certain cells to produce proteins that are recognised by the immune system to mount a defence.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk

“Queensland, Australia has some of the best researchers in the world, and the Translational Science Hub will give them the platform to develop life-saving medicines and vaccines. The Hub will bring more expertise, supply-chain capabilities, as well as clinical investigations to Queensland. We’re proud one of the world’s largest healthcare companies has chosen Queensland to help reshape 21st century medicine.”

Dr Jean-Francois Toussaint

Global Head of Vaccine Research and Development, Sanofi

“This breakthrough investment demonstrates our commitment to exploring mRNA technology by applying the minds of the best and brightest scientists from around the world. The Translational Science Hub in Queensland will work closely with the Sanofi mRNA Centre of Excellence in France and the US to accelerate a new era of vaccine innovation and disease prevention.”  

Sanofi operates 20 research and development sites around the world exploring new medicines and vaccines. This includes translational science, where researchers work to translate early observations in the laboratory into clinical results that directly benefit people.

Dr Iris Depaz

Country Medical Lead, Sanofi Australia and New Zealand

“New generation vaccines based on mRNA technology will be an important part of Australia’s vaccine toolkit. mRNA vaccines will complement existing vaccine technology, while having the potential to tackle diseases for which there is unmet need. For example, chlamydia, for which there is no vaccine yet.”

Karen Hood

Country Lead, Sanofi Australia and New Zealand

“For Sanofi, collaboration is absolutely critical when combatting disease. The Translational Science Hub shows we are proud to invest in Australia and work as partners to harness cutting-edge science to forge a new era in medical innovation. By linking our global expertise with the knowledge bank here in Australia, we will help nurture a science ecosystem that is expected to create research and industry jobs in Queensland.” 

In Australia, Sanofi is a major supplier of 17 vaccines with seven on the National Immunisation Program (NIP). The company has over 50 medicines on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) and six rare disease therapies on the Life Saving Drugs Program. Sanofi also has a consumer health business and manufacturing facility located in Brisbane.

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