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October 30, 2020

Coronavirus company news summary – Takeda, Japanese Government and Moderna sign supply deal for mRNA-1273 – Dr Reddy’s initiates partnership with BIRAC for Sputnik V trials

By Allie Nawrat

30 October 2020 

Takeda has partnered with Moderna and the government of Japan to import and market 50 million doses of Moderna’s mRNA-1273 Covid-19 vaccine from 2021. Moderna earlier announced the full enrolment of the 30,000-participant phase 3 clinical trial of the mRNA-1273 vaccine in the US. Takeda is also looking to manufacture and distribute Novavax’s Covid-19 vaccine in the country.

Dr Reddy’s Laboratories has announced a partnership with the Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC) to conduct clinical trials of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine in India. This Indi-Russian collaboration will fast-track vaccine development and prepare the market for the vaccine. The partnership gives Dr Reddy’s access to BIRAC’s clinical trial centres and labs to conduct assay testing of Sputnik V.

Equillium has received US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance to initiate a Phase III clinical trial of its drug Equinox during the fourth quarter of 2020. The drug will be evaluated for safety and efficacy in hospitalised Covid-19 patients suffering from acute respiratory distress syndrome. The initial clinical data will be available in mid-2021.

Staff present for eight of 25 clinical trials reported that Russia has temporarily paused the Covid-19 trials of Sputnik V for new volunteers, according to Reuters. The staff members confirmed that this was a result of the shortage of doses linked with  high demand. However, vaccine developers stated that the slow uptake of new participants was a new strategy focused at giving those vaccinated a second dose of the vaccine.

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