Moroccan media outlets claimed that Slaoui is working within a task force created by the US government to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus.
Rabat – Moroccan immunology doctor Moncef Slaoui denies being part of a US government task force to find a vaccine for COVID-19.
The doctor said he has no working arrangements with the US government in a statement to Moroccan French-language newspaper L’Economiste.
Several local news outlets claimed that the former chairman of pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is part of a task force that is researching a vaccine to clamp down on the spread of the virus.
The international expert is currently a member of the board of directors of American biotechnology company Moderna.
Slaoui explained that he is part of the company’s research and development committee. The committee has received support from federal organizations to help fund the development of a COVID-19 vaccine.
The doctor is also a member of a Moderna committee, including global experts, created to advise the institution on the vaccine’s development.
“Moderna, which has a very advanced technological platform, was able between January 13, date of reception of the DNA sequence of the virus, and March 25, to design the vaccine, and to produce it in such a way that it can be injected in humans, ” Slaoui told L’Economiste.
He said that the medical study on the vaccine began on March 25. Medical experts are now testing a potential vaccine.
“We will be sure of its protective potential in the coming months. By the end of the year, probably, we will know if it works and we will be able to produce it,” Slaoui said.
Slaoui explained that he works with medical groups that have discovered vaccines for several diseases, such as malaria.
Slaoui received a PhD in Molecular Biology and Immunology from the Université Libre de Bruxelles in Belgium. He completed his postdoctoral studies at Harvard Medical School and Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston.