Moderna signs ten-year deal with UK Government for vaccine production

pharmafile | December 23, 2022 | News story | Manufacturing and Production  

US biotech company Moderna has finalised a partnership with the UK government to produce vaccines, the main element of which is the construction of a new manufacturing centre in the UK.


The aim of the partnership is to generate a ready supply of UK-produced mRNA vaccines for COVID-19 and other infectious diseases like flu and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). It will see Moderna invest in research and development in the UK over the next ten years, which will include running multiple clinical trials and providing grant funding for UK universities.


The manufacturing centre will have the capacity to produce 250 million vaccine doses a year and is part of a deal estimated to be worth around $1.2bn – although the government won’t reveal the financial details due to them being “commercially sensitive”. It will generate 150 highly-skilled jobs.


Moderna will also work with the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) to ensure early vaccine development against new threats, aiming for “variant to vaccine” in 100 days.


“It is vital we invest in fighting future variants of this disease, as well as other deadly viruses that are circulating, such as seasonal flu and RSV, and this partnership with Moderna will also strengthen our ability to respond to any future pandemics,” said Health and Social Care secretary, Steve Barclay.


The deal was also supported by the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), which said it was “fantastic news for British manufacturing and UK-based science and research [and] an important reminder that the life sciences industry has the potential to be a key growth driver for the UK economy.”


ABPI chief executive Richard Torbett stated the pharma industry “already invests more than any other sector in R&D in the UK, driving the discovery of the next generation of medicines and vaccines. As this deal shows, with the right support and backing from government, our industry can drive forward innovation-led growth, and deliver the high quality, high value jobs our economy needs.”

Production on the new vaccines is due to begin in 2025.


James Spargo

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