2 February 2021

Swiss pharma giant Novartis has signed an initial agreement to offer its manufacturing capacity and expertise to help fight the Covid-19 pandemic. As per the agreement, the company will support the production of Pfizer and BioNTech‘s Covid-19 vaccine at its sterilised manufacturing facilities in Stein, Switzerland. The company will take bulk mRNA active ingredient from BioNTech and fill it into vials and then ship them back to BioNTech for distribution across the world.

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has approved AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford‘s Covid-19 vaccine, making it the third vaccine to be approved for use in the European Union. An EMA expert committee unanimously agreed to approve the vaccination for over 18s, despite concerns over inadequate data supporting its efficacy for people aged over 65.

Johnson & Johnson announced top-line safety and efficacy results from its Phase III ENSEMBLE clinical trial for an investigational single-dose Covid-19 vaccine candidate. The study met all its primary and key secondary endpoints and were based on 43,783 participants accruing 468 symptomatic Covid-19 cases.