Saudi Arabia has purchased a Canadian biotechnology company to create a new breed of vaccines that could reduce the spread of H1N1, the coronavirus that is rapidly spreading throughout the world.
The Saudi-led coalition announced the acquisition of Alqarot Pharmaceuticals Inc., in a deal worth $1.7 billion, Saudi news agency SPA said.
The Saudi-run government said Alqhar is a global leader in the field of medical research, which is crucial for the fight against H1Ns, the most common form of coronaviruses.
The United States and its allies have warned that the coronivirus is on the rise in the Middle East, and that it is likely to hit the U.S. as well.
Saudi Arabia’s new venture is a major expansion of that effort, with Alqarah being the first to manufacture the vaccine in the region.
Alqars company says it will use the technology to develop vaccines that can be tested on a larger scale.
Alqarots vaccines are expected to be ready for clinical trials by 2019.
The government said the deal will allow it to accelerate the development of vaccines in other parts of the world as well, including Europe, Asia and Australia.