Silicon Valley entrepreneur Elon Musk and German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier consider vaccine company CureVac as one the world’s most innovative firms, a source said on Thursday, after Musk and Altmaier met on Wednesday.
Musk, who is CEO of Tesla, during the meeting also discussed Tesla’s investments in Germany as well as space technology and autonomous driving, the source familiar with the discussions told Reuters.
Tesla is helping to build mobile molecule printers to make the potential COVID-19 vaccine under development by CureVac.
Tesla Inc’s CEO Elon Musk met with three German ministers and other senior politicians on Wednesday to discuss the progress of a collaboration between the car maker and a German biotech company and a planned electric vehicle factory.
Ralph Brinkhaus, leader of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU conservative parliamentary bloc, said Musk was satisfied with the progress of Tesla’s alliance with vaccine developer CureVac.
Last November, the U.S. electric carmaker announced plans to build a Gigafactory in Gruenheide in the eastern state of Brandenburg that surrounds Berlin.
Musk checked on the progress of that project, meeting earlier with Brandenburg state premier Dietmar Woidke.
CureVac’s covid vaccine approach is based on so-called messenger RNA, pieces of genetic code that prompt human cells to produce therapeutic proteins. Moderna and BionTech are using similar technology.
CureVac said it could start large-scale human trials on its vaccine in the last quarter of this year based on results of its current trials.