Pfizer and BioNTech have bagged a $1.95 billion deal with the US government for supplying 100 million doses of their jointly developed BNT162 COVID-19 vaccine candidate.
Recently, the two pharma companies were granted the fast track designation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for BNT162b1 and BNT162b1 vaccines, which are two of the four vaccines being developed for COVID-19 under the BNT162 vaccine program.
The agreement signed for BNT162 by Pfizer and BioNTech with the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the US Department of Defense is expected to meet the goal of the US government’s Operation Warp Speed program of beginning delivery of 300 million doses of a vaccine for the novel coronavirus in 2021. The deal will come into effect after Pfizer successfully manufactures and gets approval or emergency use authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the BNT162 coronavirus vaccine candidate.
Alex Azar – US Department of Health and Human Services Secretary said: “Through Operation Warp Speed, we are assembling a portfolio of vaccines to increase the odds that the American people will have at least one safe, effective vaccine as soon as the end of this year.
“Depending on success in clinical trials, today’s agreement will enable the delivery of approximately 100 million doses of vaccine being developed by Pfizer and BioNTech.”
As per the agreement, the US government can also acquire up to a further 500 million doses of the mRNA-based vaccine, which is being evaluated in ongoing phase 1/2 clinical trials in the US and Germany.
Dr. Albert Bourla – Pfizer Chairman and CEO said: “We’ve been committed to making the impossible possible by working tirelessly to develop and produce in record time a safe and effective vaccine to help bring an end to this global health crisis.
“We made the early decision to begin clinical work and large-scale manufacturing at our own risk to ensure that product would be available immediately if our clinical trials prove successful and an Emergency Use Authorization is granted. We are honored to be a part of this effort to provide Americans access to protection from this deadly virus.”