The race to secure coronavirus vaccines supplies ramped up another notch after European Commission and CureVac (NASDAQ:CVAC) said they had concluded initial discussions over the supply of at least 225mln doses of a COVID-19 inoculation.

Shares in the German biotech, which have jumped by 300% since IPO last week on the tech-led NASDAQ exchange, were up a further 17% in morning trade.

Sourcing supplies of promising vaccines (irrespective of their potential efficacy) has become something of an arm’s race.

For example, the EU is also in talks with Johnson & Johnson and Sanofi and has agreed advanced purchase deal with AstraZeneca for at least 300mln shots of the drug it is developing with the University of Oxford.

The US, meanwhile, has deals with Moderna Therapeutics, Janssen, Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine division, GlaxoSmithKline, Sanofi Pasteur, Novavax and AstraZeneca.

Countries such as the UK are also hedging their bets, while Russia, probably to the consternation of the world at large, has rolled out a jab developed by its own scientists.