Friday, September 25, 2020

Musk to inspect progress on his RNA printers for COVID vaccine

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San Francisco: Elon Musk would be in Germany this week to meet the researchers at the German vaccine maker CureVac and see the progress on portable molecular RNA printers to help produce quick doses of vaccine maker’s Covid-19 candidate.

CureVac’s printers are designed to quickly create mRNA vaccine candidates against known pathogens and Tesla, as a side project, is building RNA microfactories for CureVac and possibly others.

Earlier this year, Musk announced that Tesla has become the manufacturing partner for biotech firm CureVac who is working on a COVID-19 vaccine based on their RNA technology.

Musk said in a tweet on Sunday that he will also visit the Gigafactory Berlin that is under construction and will be operational next year.

“That & Giga Berlin are why I’m headed to Germany this week. Conversations with Harvard epidemiology confirmed that a high-speed RNA printer has potential be helpful for vaccines & cures in many areas,” Musk tweeted.

Tesla filed a joint patent with CureVac on a possibly revolutionary “bioreactor for RNA.”

RNA is a molecule found within all forms of cellular life, described as a sister molecule to DNA.

Pharmaceutical companies like CureVac are working to create a Covid-19 vaccine using “messenger RNA,” which can be manually inserted into cells to initiate an immune response.

CureVac says its mRNA vaccine candidates direct cells to make proteins or antigens against various diseases.

Other companies making RNA vaccines include Moderna and Pfizer and BioNTech.

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