Gov. Hogan, Novavax’ Erck, & BIO’s Dr. McMurry-Heath Toured Novavax Labs and Discussed Progress on COVID-19 Vaccine
Event Highlighted Leadership in Vaccine Development and Regional Growth in Biotechnology Innovation
Gaithersburg, MD (September 24, 2020) – Today, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan and Dr. Michelle McMurry-Heath, President & CEO of Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), joined Novavax President & CEO Stanley Erck to discuss the importance of the biotechnology sector in Maryland, the industry’s efforts to address COVID-19, and progress being made by Novavax to develop a vaccine for the deadly virus. A video of the remarks is now available.
"When the COVID-19 crisis began, even before we had our first confirmed cases, I said that our state was home to some of the top health research facilities in the world, and I hoped that we might be a part of developing treatments and perhaps even a vaccine for this deadly virus," said Governor Hogan. "Novavax took that challenge and immediately hit the ground running. The State of Maryland is proud to support the efforts of Novavax and our entire hub of life sciences companies, which is at the forefront in the fight against COVID-19."
Dr. Michelle McMurry-Heath spoke about the unprecedented response by the biotechnology industry to fight COVID-19. “Novavax is a shining example of that response, that galvanized intellectual capacity, and the ability to put the power of science to healing the world,” she said. “We at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization couldn’t be prouder of how our companies, our scientists, our entrepreneurs, have really mobilized to change the world.”
“We are about to enter three different phase 3 trials, including a trial that is starting imminently in the UK in 10,000 people, a trial that is starting in the U.S. in a few weeks that will be 30,000 people and a third phase 3 trial in India. We have a global presence. This is a global disease. I don’t think it’s sufficient that we have a vaccine that is just used for the United States. To protect the United States, you need to protect the world. It is a global economy. And that’s what we’re doing,” Erck said. “We feel a tremendous responsibility in our role at the forefront of vaccine development and in our mission to deliver a safe and effective vaccine as rapidly as possible to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic. As a science-based organization dedicated to improving health, it has been gratifying to see many like-minded stakeholders in our region come together to that end.”
The remarks were made on-site at Novavax in Gaithersburg, Maryland. Full video of the remarks is available here.