2022-07-29| COVID-19Partnerships

Moderna to Supply 66 Million COVID-19 Boosters to US

by Max Heirich
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On July 29, Moderna announced they would supply the U.S. government with 66 million doses of their COVID-19 vaccine booster. This booster contains both Spikevax as well as Omicron mRNA strain. In return, Moderna will receive up to $1.74 billion for manufacturing and delivering the doses. 

Related Article: NIH Launches mRNA Nipah Virus Vaccine Trial With Moderna

The Bivalent Vaccine Protects Against Multiple Strains

These new COVID-19 boosters supplied to the U.S. government contain Spikevax, the brand name for Moderna’s mRNA COVID-19 vaccine. The boosters are functionally equivalent to the two-dose primary series of vaccines that a patient initially receives. The third booster bolsters a body’s immune response to COVID-19 after the initial protection begins to wear off.

In addition, the vaccines ordered today contain a strain of mRNA to protect against the Omicron BA.4/5 strain of COVID-19. This bivalent vaccine, dubbed mRNA-1273.222, is a vaccine that protects against two different antigens. Moderna developed it in accordance with recent FDA recommendations.

66 million Vaccine Boosters for $1.74 billion

Not only does the finalized contract secure 66 million doses of the bivalent COVID-19 vaccine, but it leaves room for the additional purchasing of up to 234 million doses from Moderna. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response (ASPR), and Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) supported the funds for the contract.

Stéphane Bancel, Chief Executive Officer of Moderna, said in a statement, “We are pleased to extend our successful collaboration with the U.S. government. Moderna’s mRNA platform is enabling us to rapidly create mRNA-1273.222, a bivalent vaccine that specifically targets Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5, the most prevalent variants of concern in the U.S. today. We remain fully committed to leveraging our innovative technology platform to offer tailored vaccines that help protect communities against COVID-19.”

This deal indicates the ongoing effort by Moderna and other biotech companies to innovate and adapt to the various COVID-19 variants born of the ongoing pandemic.

Related Article: EMA Begins Reviewing Cancer Medicine for COVID-19 Without Manufacturer’s Application

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