Canada to secure up to 76 million coronavirus vaccine doses from Novavax – National

Canada to secure up to 76 million coronavirus vaccine doses from Novavax - National



Novavax Inc. says it has reached an agreement with the Canadian government to supply up to 76 million doses of its possible vaccine for COVID-19.The company announced the agreement Monday morning, hours before Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was due to make an announcement of his own following a visit with the National Research Council of Canada in Montreal.Novavax — a biotechnology company that develops vaccines for serious infectious diseases — said in a statement that it expects to finalize the advance purchase agreement “as early as the second quarter of 2021.”
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Novavax’s vaccine (NVX-CoV2373) is currently in its second phase of clinical trials. The company plans to begin the third phase in September. Story continues below advertisement

Earlier in August, the Canadian government announced it had signed two deals to purchase “millions of doses” of possible vaccine candidates against the novel coronavirus, but did not say how many doses it would buy nor how much it would cost. At the time, federal officials cited ongoing negotiations with multiple international suppliers.The two separate procurement agreements were signed with Pfizer Canada, which is working with BioNTech in Germany, and one with U.S.-based Moderna. Both of these vaccine candidates have advanced to the third stage of clinical trials.

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Coronavirus: Canada inks deals with Pfizer, Moderna for coronavirus vaccine candidates

Coronavirus: Canada inks deals with Pfizer, Moderna for coronavirus vaccine candidates

The Novavax agreement is the first glimpse of how many doses of a vaccine candidate the government is working to secure. The cost of the agreement is not yet clear.

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Novavax’s vaccine has shown an ability to produce antibodies against COVID-19, according to initial data from an early-stage trial this month. Story continues below advertisement

The company recently began enrolling volunteers for its second phase candidate, with data from that part of the clinical trial expected in the fourth quarter of 2020.
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Globally, the Novavax vaccine is one of nearly 30 being tested in human clinical trials. However, it lags behind candidates from Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca, which are in later-stages at this time.The United States and Britain are also in deals with Novavax. The U.S. awarded the company $1.6 billion in July to test and manufacture its vaccine in the country, with the hopes of securing 100 million doses by January. Britain has requested to buy 60 million doses.The Novavax vaccine, and any other potential vaccine, will be required to pass Health Canada regulatory approval before being distributed.

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Should the COVID-19 vaccine be patent-free?

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Anita Anand, the minister of public services and procurement, in a statement called the in-principle agreement “an important step” in the government’s efforts to secure a vaccine as the pandemic continues and “evolves.” Story continues below advertisement

As of Aug. 30, the coronavirus pandemic has claimed 9,117 lives in Canada overall, and 127,870 cases have been diagnosed, according to figures released by provincial and territorial governments.The vast majority of people diagnosed — about 89 per cent — have recovered from the viral illness.More than 6.3 million tests have been conducted since late January.This is a breaking news story. More information to come. — with files from Reuters and Global News’ Kerri Breen

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