Covid-19

Current winners of the Covid-19 vaccine race previewed plans for their windfalls at last week’s 40th J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference, which took place virtually for the second consecutive year.

Moderna trumpeted $17.5 billion in 2021 Covid-19 product sales and sounded an optimistic note about the year ahead, claiming $18.5 billion in advance purchase agreements for vaccine or booster doses for delivery in 2022. Also, CEO Stéphane Bancel embraced the goal of bringing to market a “pan…

The state of the fight: 

A booster dose of Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin increased neutralizing antibodies up to 265-fold.
  WHO added therapies from Eli Lilly and GSK/Vir to its list of recommended Covid-19 treatments.
  Novartis will pay over $162 million to in-license Molecular Partners’ ensovibep antiviral candidate.

 

AUTHORIZED VACCINES

Two doses of Pfizer/BioNTech’s vaccine reduced the risk of Covid-19 hospitalization by 94% among adolescents ages 12…

The state of the fight: 

India granted Biological E’s Corbevax—a low-cost, patent-free vaccine—its first regulatory authorization.
  A J&J booster was 85% effective against hospitalization in South Africa during the Omicron wave.
  India authorized molnupiravir but omitted the antiviral from its recommended clinical protocol on safety concerns.

 

AUTHORIZED VACCINES

 
Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin generated “superior antibody responses” in children…

RNA therapeutics specialist Sirnaomics wrapped up 2021 with a $64 million IPO on the Hong Kong stock exchange, Clarivate BioWorld reported Tuesday.

Based in Maryland and Suzhou, the company’s pipeline includes influenza A and Covid-19 therapies and a Covid-19 vaccine. Its lead candidate is a Phase 2 oncology and dermal fibrosis treatment, per a press release.

Meanwhile, Israel’s BiondVax announced on December 23 a $9.8 million raise from a follow-on offering of American…

The state of the fight: 

Oral antivirals from Pfizer and Merck notched U.S. FDA authorizations.
  Earlier use of remdesivir cut the risk of death or hospitalization by 87% in a new study.
  The Novavax vaccine secured a second WHO Emergency Use Listing.

AUTHORIZED VACCINES  

The AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine starts waning in protection against serious illness within three months of the second dose, according to cohort studies in Brazil and Scotland published…

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and Human Rights Watch (HRW) are lobbying the U.S. government to force Pfizer and Moderna to share their Covid-19 mRNA technology with developing country vaccine manufacturers, the organizations said last week.

In an open letter, the activist groups quoted a December report by researchers from MSF and AccessIBSA that identified 100 manufacturers across Africa, Asia and Latin America with the “technical requirements and quality standards to manufacture…

The state of the fight: 

WHO issued an Emergency Use Listing for Serum Institute of India’s version of Novavax’s vaccine.
  The U.S. CDC recommended mRNA-based vaccines over J&J’s.
  Data on the effectiveness of monoclonal antibody therapies against the Omicron variant began pouring in.

AUTHORIZED VACCINES  

A U.S. CDC advisory panel recommended mRNA-based vaccines over the J&J jab, citing blood clot side effects stemming from the single-dose…

Moderna plans to set up an mRNA vaccine manufacturing facility in Australia capable of producing up to 100 million doses per year, the Massachusetts-based biotech announced Monday. The new facility, in the state of Victoria, will make shots against respiratory viruses including Covid-19, seasonal influenza and RSV, the press release said. The company did not disclose financial terms, but Reuters reported Monday that the deal could be worth up to $1.4 billion.

Moderna beat out a dozen…

The state of the fight: 

New studies supported heterologous primary regimens and heterologous boosters.
  Serum Institute of India is weighing slashing Covishield production by 50%.
  The U.S. FDA OK’d AstraZeneca’s Evusheld long-acting monoclonal antibody therapy as PrEP for certain groups.

 

AUTHORIZED VACCINES  

Mixing the AstraZeneca/Oxford or Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines with a second dose of Moderna’s shot generated non-inferior immune responses …

Sanofi shared substantial growth expectations in immunization during its vaccine investors day last week.

Through a combination of new vaccines and increased sales of existing products, Sanofi "expects to more than double its vaccine sales by the end of the decade," for a total vaccines business size of almost $57 billion by 2030, FiercePharma reported.

The company sees mRNA, pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCVs), and RSV as three areas of opportunity going forward, its press…