Thursday, 06 August, 2020


U.S. Drops $2.1 Billion on Experimental COVID-19 Vaccine

As the race for a vaccine against the new coronavirus intensifies many rich countries are rushing to the front of the line by placing advance orders for the inevitably limited supply to guarantee their citizens are vaccinated first [File Laurent Ciprian Trump administration to provide up to $2.1 billion to Sanofi, GSK for vaccine production
Patty Aguilar | 01 August, 2020, 05:02

This initiative falls under the U.S. government's Operation Warp Speed.

"Operation Warp Speed is not interested in investing in those", a senior administration official said on Thursday.

"On Wednesday, we received the first consignment of 34 Covaxine (BBV152 COVID vaccine) developed by Bharat Biotech International and on Friday, we received 20 covaxine (ZyCoV-D) developed by drug firm Zydus Cadila". "Sanofi will receive the majority of the US government funding".

Adjuvants are materials in some vaccines that can help create a stronger immune response.

The hospital is among the 12 institutes selected for clinical trials of the country's first indigenous Covid-19 vaccine, Covaxin. "We have started human clinical trial of BBV152 COVID vaccine and soon the trial of ZyCoV-D vaccine will be started", said the chief administrative officer.

If the studies are positive, the companies said they could seek USA regulatory approval in the first half of 2021.

Under the USA contract with Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline, more than half of the $2.1 billion is earmarked for clinical trials and other development costs.

The companies have agreed to carry out fill-finish manufacturing in the U.S.so that vaccine doses are packaged and ready to ship immediately if clinical trials are successful and FDA authorizes use. By funding the manufacturing effort, the federal government will own the doses that result from the demonstration project, which will take place in parallel with the clinical trials.

If approved, the 100 million doses of this vaccine will be available to Americans at no cost, according to the announcement by the Department of Health and Human Services.

It further states, "the high-income countries could act as an inclusive global buyers' group, thus accelerating the development of safe and effective vaccines and maximise access to them for all who need it across the world". "For mRNA-1273, we now model pandemic-level pricing similar to PFE/BNTX at $20/dose ($40/course), and see pricing materially above this level as challenging in the pandemic period".

The companies said the U.S. government has the option for the supply of "additional 500 million doses" in the long term.

It marks the second contract for the Franco-British pair's vaccine candidate after they agreed earlier this week to supply 60 million doses to the British government. Representatives of France and Italy are on the European Union's negotiation team for supplying European countries from Sanofi's and GSK's European industrial network with the vaccine, Sanofi added.

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