HYDERABAD: Aurobindo Pharma Limited has inked an exclusive license agreement with US-based COVAXX to develop, commercialize and manufacture the latter’s UB-612 Covid-19 vaccine candidate for India and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
As per the pact, Aurobindo Pharma will also get non-exclusive rights to other select emerging and developing markets. The partnership also includes clinical development.
COVAXX is currently conducting Phase 1 clinical trials for UB-612, which is the first multitope peptide-based Covid-19 vaccine. The Phase 2/3 clinical trials to be conducted by COVAXX will begin early in the first quarter of 2021 in Asia, Latin America, and the USA. The vaccine candidate requires only normal refrigeration for distribution
Aurobindo will manufacture the finished doses of the vaccine at its facilities in Hyderabad where it has the capacity to manufacture 220 million doses in multi-dose presentation and is building additional facilities to ramp up to nearly 480 million doses by June 2021 at an investment of Rs 250-275 crore.
Aurobindo Pharma Ltd managing director N Govindarajan said the first-ever synthetic peptide-based Covid-19 vaccine holds immense potential for eliminating shedding, and hence containing the spread of the pandemic.
“COVAXX is committed to providing an equitable distribution of UB-612 by prioritizing emerging markets where the unmet need is greatest. During this global health crisis response, we must establish partners with the strongest capabilities to prioritize the development and the delivery of our vaccine. Aurobindo is the ideal partner to advance UB-612 in India and other emerging nations and support our mission of democratizing health worldwide,” said Mei Mei Hu, co-founder, and CEO, COVAXX.
Apart from the COVAXX tie-up, Aurobindo is also developing a candidate based on its proprietary Vesiculo Vax platform through its wholly-owned subsidiary Auro Vaccines and has also collaborated with the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) for developing multiple coronavirus vaccines.