Merck & Co. Will Manufacture J&J Vaccine, Other COVID-19 Medicines Under BARDA Deal
US Government Will Fund Up To $268.8m In Production Site Upgrades
Broader than initially reported, Merck & Co.’s agreement with BARDA extends beyond J&J’s recently authorized vaccine to other COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics as needed.
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After backing off of MRK-7110 for hospitalized patients the company’s focus is on the oral antiviral molnupiravir for outpatients – which would be a huge win, but the drug has yet to fully prove itself in the clinic.
The companies still plan to develop a variant-specific version, while J&J said it anticipates meeting vaccine supply goals despite a manufacturing mix-up.
Plus: Sanofi is getting into the mRNA vaccine game under a partnership with Translate Bio but has a lot of catching up to do.