Oxford University-AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine
AstraZeneca, which has already begun phase III human trials of its AZD1222 (formerly known as ChAdOx1 nCoV-19) vaccine candidate, signed its tenth supply-and-manufacturing deal. Brazil announced on Saturday it had signed a $127 million agreement to start producing locally the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.
Elcio Franco, Brazil’s No.2 public health official, said in a press conference that the country would initially produce 30 million doses of the vaccine — half by December and half by January of next year, Reuters reported.
The first to get the vaccine, which will be produced by local vaccine maker Fiocruz, will be high-risk groups such as the elderly, people with co-morbidities and health and security professionals.
Earlier this month, the AstraZeneca CEO told a radio station that the vaccine candidate would likely provide protection against Covid-19 for one year.
💉 Moderna coronavirus vaccine status
US firm Moderna Inc, which has already started phase II trials for its vaccine candidate mRNA-1273, has partnered with drugmaker Catalent Inc to produce 100 million doses starting in the third quarter of 2020.
Under the deal, Catalent will also provide packaging and labeling, storage and distribution services to support Moderna’s late-stage clinical trial for the vaccine. Catalent is already in partnership with Johnson and Johnson as well as AstraZeneca.
Recently, Moderna Inc Chief Executive Officer Stephane Bancel told Bloomberg that efficacy data for its Covid-19 jab could be available by as soon as Thanksgiving (November) if everything goes right. Final-stage trials of the Moderna vaccine is set to begin next month on 30,000 people.
💉 Sanofi-GSK coronavirus vaccine status
French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi, which has developed a Covid-19 vaccine candidate with GSK, recently said it had accelerated the start of phase 1/2 clinical trials to September from December. In a statement, Sanofi said they have “multiple Covid-19 vaccine candidates” in the works and hope to start a clinical trial with humans in the fourth quarter of this year.
Sanofi also announced it would invest $425 million to expand its vaccine development venture with US start-up Translate Bio.
Sanofi CEO Paul Hudson told journalists earlier this week that his firm’s most promising Covid-19 treatment is “the only vaccine in the race which is offering a proven platform which works at scale”.
Sanofi is using one of GSK’s proprietary adjuvants — a compound that boosts the immune response — with this vaccine. The French firm expects to have 100 million doses of the recombinant vaccine by the end of 2020 and an additional 1 billion doses in 2021.