PopVax is an Indian biotechnology company based in Hyderabad which is building a novel second-generation mRNA platform for low-cost broadly-protective vaccines via computationally-driven antigen design, starting with an open-source booster vaccine candidate that is intended to protect against the entire sarbecovirus species and, if things go well, the betacoronavirus genus, including current and future strains of SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19.

We believe that making vaccines that can protect against entire families of high-risk pathogens today is our best shot at preventing future pandemics, while at the same time blunting the many long-term harms of seemingly innocuous infections that have begun to come to light, one example of which is the emerging consensus that multiple sclerosis (MS) is caused by the Epstein–Barr virus (EBV), which a large majority of adults have at some point been infected with.

PopVax was founded by Soham Sankaran, and our research work has been funded primarily via research agreements with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation & Vitalik Buterin's Balvi. The team includes a former founding employee of Moderna and some of India's top experts in mRNA, lipid nanoparticle (LNP) formulation, and antigen design from both academia and industry.

We’re building a world-class, R&D-driven mRNA biopharma company right here in India, which is bursting with talent that the incumbents are both misusing and underfunding. We intend to leverage our platform and this latent talent base to produce viable rationally-designed vaccine and therapeutic candidates to prevent or treat life-threatening diseases at a pace heretofore unseen in the history of the pharmaceutical industry, then distribute the ones which work at massive scale and low cost across the world, with a particular emphasis on ensuring timely and affordable access in lower-income countries. If this piques your interest, we’re hiring aggressively across antigen & protein design, machine learning, nucleic acid delivery, bioassays, immunology, software engineering, communications & scientific writing, and regulatory affairs (especially people with extensive experience getting new vaccines or biologics through the US FDA approval process) – you can take a look at open positions over at jobs.popvax.com. If you believe you could contribute to the company in some way that’s not captured in those job descriptions, you’re welcome to email a cover letter and resume to jobs@popvax.com

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What it takes to develop, manufacture, test, and deploy broadly-protective mRNA vaccines


Founder of PopVax (https://popvax.com). Not dead yet.
PopVax is an Indian biotechnology company based in Hyderabad working on accelerating the development and equitable deployment of next-generation mRNA vaccines and therapeutics.