The U.S. Authorized Coronavirus Vaccine Contract worth of 450 Million Dollar With Johnson & Johnson
The Trump administration is investing virtually half a billion dollars on one company in the race to find a vaccine against coronavirus.
According to a 456 million dollar order with Johnson & Johnson’s Pharmaceuticals arm Janssen, which specified a “new vaccination possession for COVID-19,” Forbes found. It’s the largest amount reported to be spent on a vaccine project until now, even though the pharma company hasn’t yet begun any clinical trials as other companies.
On March 27, 2020, the deal was officially signed with the Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR). It has complied with another order, made as part of the same contract with Janssen, for $150 million on March 20, 2020, for a “new antiviral” for COVID-19.
A spokesperson from Johnson & Johnson confirmed the $456 million award related to a collaboration with ASPR’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), as announced in February but didn’t provide any more details on the order. The work was built on previous contracts for developing countermeasures for various other flu. The worth of the coronavirus-specific project had not previously been revealed.
It is part of a deal between the UNITED STATE government and Johnson & Johnson to co-invest $1 billion into research on vaccination study, development as well as clinical testing of the COVID-19 vaccine. The company states that it expects human trials for its vaccine to go on by September 2020. It expects the first batches of vaccine to be readily available for emergency situation use by early 2021.
Johnson & Johnson had also announced a partnership with the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in developing a potential vaccine against COVID-19. The company is trying to utilize the same innovations utilized for developing vaccines for HIV, Ebola, and Zika. The company announced that it wishes to develop a COVID-19 vaccine for clinical rials by the end of the month. A spokesperson claimed, Johnson & Johnson still hopes to reveal progress on that before completion of the week.
BARDA has announced that it’s dealing with an additional pharma company, Sanofi Pasteur, on a different type of vaccination. Sanofi will develop a genetic match to the viral proteins, as per BARDA. “The protein’s DNA will be incorporated with DNA from a virus that is harmless to humans and will be utilized to rapidly create huge quantities of antigen, which will protect from the infection by promoting the body’s immune system.”
Vaccination trials already proceeding
Neither Johnson & Johnson nor Sanofi have in fact tested any potential vaccine, despite the coronavirus vaccine contracts.
Other companies have actually advanced further. The first phase of a clinical trial reviewing an investigational vaccine kicked off in the mid-March at Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle, Washington. The vaccine was developed at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) with Moderna, a biotech company, Massachusetts.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson, U.K. has been tested positive for COVID-19, and he has announced ₤ 210 million to the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), which is supporting the development of vaccines to make them readily available around the world and is seeking $2 billion to do so. Last week the University of Oxford, U.K, announced that its scientists had started screening volunteers for an approaching vaccine human trial. Additionally, Imperial College London has revealed a project on a vaccine against COVID-19.
There are only 2 vaccinations entering the trials, one from the NIAID-backed treatment and another from CanSino Biological and the Beijing Institute of Biotechnology, China.
It’s highly unlikely any vaccine or drug will certainly be made available this year, despite the worldwide rush to discover a vaccine as soon as possible. Though it’ll be presented much faster than a normal vaccine or drug, Dr. Richard Hatchett, CEO, CEPI, has formerly claimed it will take between a year and 18 months before the world will have access to a COVID-19 vaccination.