Coronavirus company news summary – VBI signs a vaccine deal with Canada – over 150 countries have joined the WHO’s COVAX Facility

22 September 2020 (Last Updated September 22nd, 2020 08:59)

22 September 2020 

VBI Vaccines has signed an agreement with Canadian Government for the development of a Covid-19 vaccine candidate by 2022 through mid-stage human trials performed exclusively in the country. The government agreed to provide approximately 75% of the development costs, along with C$55.9m ($42.2m) for the project.

Serum Institute of India (SII) has started a Phase III clinical trial of the AstraZeneca and University of Oxford Covid-19 vaccine candidate at the state-run Sassoon General Hospital in Pune, Maharashtra. The trial is expected to recruit 150 to 200 volunteers. Also, SII plans to initiate the trial of another potential Covid-19 vaccine, developed by Novavax, next month.

More than 150 countries, including 64 higher income and 92 low- and middle-income economies, have joined the World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations of  COVAX Facility, which aims for equitable distribution of Covid-19 vaccines. However, China and the US are missing from the list of members. COVAX Facility intends to begin signing agreements with vaccine manufacturers and developers to potentially secure two billion doses by the end of next year.

Russia's Petrovax Pharm has started dosing participants in a Phase III clinical trial of Ad5-nCoV Covid-19 vaccine candidate developed by China-based CanSino Biologics and Beijing Institute of Biotechnology, Academy of Military Medical Science. The first group of participants were vaccinated at medical centres in Moscow, in alliance with contract research organisation OCT Clinical.