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Novartis: joins life science consortium to tackle virus

( - Novartis has joined a consortium of life science companies that plan to collaborate to accelerate the development of vaccines, diagnostics, and treatments for COVID-19, the Swiss drugmaker said on Thursday.

This blockbuster consortium of 15 companies - which includes, amongst others, Boehringer Ingelheim, bioMerieux, Eli Lilly, Gilead, GSK, and Pfizer - has agreed to share their proprietary libraries of molecular assets, Novartis said.

The project, initiated as part of the COVID-19 accelerator launched by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation two weeks ago, aims to quickly screen those drugs, tests, and compounds that have potential against COVID-19.

Successful hits could move rapidly into in vivo trials in as little as two months, Novartis said.

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