$29 billion biotech company Moderna just signed a big cloud deal with Amazon Web Services, even as the race for a COVID-19 vaccine accelerates

  • Biotech company Moderna on Wednesday announced that it has chosen Amazon Web Services as its preferred cloud partner.
  • The company is seen as a leader in COVID-19 vaccine research, entering its third phase of clinical trials late July.
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$29 billion biotech company Moderna announced a new partnership with Amazon Web Services on Wednesday that will see the cloud giant become its “preferred” cloud provider. The deal will also see Moderna tap AWS as its standard platform for doing analytics and machine learning.

Moderna is one of the leading companies in the race for a COVID-19 vaccine, and last week dosed 30,000 people with the first vaccine candidate to reach phase 3 of testing in the United States. 

The process of developing a new vaccine requires years of disease research and lab testing before it can be administered to humans. Moderna already uses AWS to run everyday accounting and inventory mangement as well as to power its production facility, robotics tools and engineering systems, “which enables the company to achieve greater efficiency and visibility across its operations,” according to a press release.

“With AWS, our researchers have the ability to quickly design and execute research experiments and rapidly uncover new insights to get potentially life-saving treatments into production faster,” Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said in that press release. 

Biotech giants like Moderna are increasingly modernizing their IT infrastructures in the hunt for new drugs and treatments, including by use of artificial intelligence. Meanwhile, the biotechnology sector in general has become a sought-after market for AWS and its leading rival Microsoft Azure both, with the latter recently inking a big cloud and AI deal with drugmaker Novartis.

Results from the vaccine test could be made public as early as October, according to biotech analyst Michael Yee

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