GSK had previously announced that it would collaborate with Sanofi to produce adjuvant for the latter’s vaccine candidate against COVID-19.
The UK company has extended this service to provide the product to ‘multiple’ adjuvanted candidates, with the aim of being able to manufacture one billion doses in 2021.
GSK chose not to name particular partners but stated that the vaccine candidates are being developed in North America, Europe, and China – with discussions on additional collaborations ‘ongoing’.
In order to achieve capacity for one billion doses, GSK reviewed its network of sites and will utilize facilities in the UK, US, Canada, and other European countries to manufacture, fill and finish the adjuvant.
The company announced that it has already started manufacturing the adjuvant at risk, as well as being in discussions with governments and ‘global institutions’ for the provision of funding to aid in the production effort.
Through work with the same stakeholders, GSK stated that it would be looking to provide ‘fair access’ for people across the world of the adjuvant. Adding that it does not plan to profit from sales, as any additional income will be “invested in support of coronavirus-related research and long-term pandemic preparedness.”
In terms of what the adjuvant brings to a vaccine candidate, the company outlined that the product can reduce the amount of vaccine protein required per dose – allowing for increased levels of production. Adjuvant can also enhance the immune response, providing stronger and longer-lasting immunity against infections.
Prior to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, GSK had announced this year that it would be looking to cut a number of roles from its vaccines facility located in Wavre, Belgium, including roles in manufacturing.