The Gaithursburg, Maryland-based company announced on Tuesday that it has been awarded $1.6 billion by the federal government to complete late-stage clinical development of its NVX‑CoV2373 Covid-19 vaccine candidate as well as kick off large-scale manufacturing and delivery of the drug by 2021.
The vaccine, which focuses on boosting the body’s immune system to effectively combat a Covid-19 infection, is currently in phase 1 and phase 2 clinical trials in Australia, with preliminary results expected at the end of this month.
Novavax shares took off in May as after the company announced $388 million in funding from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations to help scale up development of its vaccine candidate and “dramatically increase its large-scale manufacturing capacity.”
The additional $1.6 billion from Operation Warp Speed will be used to support a more widespread phase 3 trial as well as help the company prepare to stockpile and build out a distribution network for the drug, Novavax said.
Novavax's NVX‑CoV2373 is a vaccine candidate engineered from the genetic sequence of SARS‑CoV‑2, the virus that causes Covid-19 disease.
The trial vaccine was created using Novavax’s so-called "recombinant nanoparticle technology" to enhance the immune response and stimulate high levels of neutralizing antibodies that fight Covid-19.
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