Aurobindo Pharma has signed an exclusive license agreement with US-based COVAXX to develop the latter’s UB-612 multitope peptide-based vaccine to fight Covid-19.
UB-612 is said to be the first multitope, synthetic peptide-based Covid-19 vaccine candidate.
Under the terms of the deal, Aurobindo Pharma will leverage its existing development, commercial and manufacturing infrastructure to develop, manufacture and sell COVAXX’s UB-612 vaccine for India and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) agency.
The company has also obtained non-exclusive rights to sell the vaccine in other select emerging and developing markets.
Currently under the Phase 1 clinical trial by COVAXX, the vaccine candidate utilises normal refrigeration for distribution, eliminating the use of freezing.
Aurobindo Pharma managing director N Govindarajan said: “We are proud to partner with COVAXX in developing the first-ever synthetic peptide-based vaccine to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This vaccine has immense potential in eliminating shedding, and hence containing, the spread of the pandemic.”
COVAXX plans to commence the Phase 2/3 clinical trials on the vaccine candidate in early first quarter of 2021 in Asia, Latin America and US.
Once COVAXX supplies the bulk product, Aurobindo Pharma will manufacture the finished doses at its facilities in Hyderabad, Telangana, a state in India.
The company is building additional facilities to increase its total capacity to nearly 480 million doses by June 2021 from the current 220 million doses in multi-dose presentation.
COVAXX co-founder and CEO Mei Mei Hu said: “As one of the leading industry players with a strong track record of execution and investment in vaccines, Aurobindo Pharma is the ideal partner to advance UB-612 in India and other emerging nations and to support our mission of democratizing health worldwide.”
The financial terms of the agreement have not been disclosed by the companies.