Fresh from receiving $1.6bn (€1.38bn) in funding from the US government’s Operation Warp Speed, Novavax contracts Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies (FDB), a contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO), to manufacture bulk drug substance for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate.
The agreement, announced at the end of last week, has already been put into action, with FDB already producing the first batch of NVX-CoV2373 out of its North Carolina, US, site.
The CDMO will produce the vaccine for use in a pivotal Phase III clinical trial, which will include up to 30,000 individuals and is expected to begin in the fall of 2020.
According Novavax, the funding provided by the US will allow it to complete late-stage clinical development of its vaccine and will see the company provide 100 million doses to the government by the end of 2020.
The company has managed to progress its vaccine quickly with additional funding provided by CEPI, after the organization provided Novavax $388m, its biggest single investment to date.
This allowed Novavax to pursue the acquisition of an entire company, Praha Vaccines, to add its in-house manufacturing capabilities.