UK signs deal with GlaxoSmithKline to ‘fill and finish’ 60million doses of Novavax’s Covid vaccine

Boris Johnson tonight revealed GlaxoSmithKline will support the manufacturing of up to 60million doses of the Novavax coronavirus vaccine in the UK.

The UK vaccines taskforce has signed a deal with GSK to ‘fill and finish’ supplies of the American jab at its factory in Durham starting from May.

Mr Johnson said the move will ‘further boost our vaccine rollout’, which will slow down next month due to a a shortfall of five million AstraZeneca jabs from India.

The ‘fill and finish’ is the completion stage of vaccine manufacturing, preparing vials of the final vaccine and packaging them for distribution and use. 

Britain has secured 60million doses of the Novavax vaccine under an advance purchase agreement with the American firm. 

Earlier this month Novavax announced its jab is 86 per cent effective against the Kent variant and 96 per cent against the original Covid.

According to results of phase three trial in the UK, the jab offers 100 per cent protection against severe disease, including all hospital admission and death.

Novavax is due to submit its late stage trial data to Britain’s medical regulator in the coming weeks and approval is expected in May. 

The Prime Minister told tonight’s Downing Street press conference: ‘I’m delighted by GSK’s investment, which shows the strength of UK manufacturing, and will further boost our vaccine rollout.

‘The vaccines taskforce has worked hand in glove with business to successfully deliver vaccines to the whole of the UK and this agreement will continue to support our approach.

‘We remain on track to offer a first jab to all over-50s by April 15, and all adults by the end of July, and I want to once again encourage everyone to come forward for a vaccine when you’re called.’

Boris Johnson tonight revealed the British drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline will support the manufacturing of up to 60million doses of the Novavax vaccine in the UK

Boris Johnson tonight revealed the British drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline will support the manufacturing of up to 60million doses of the Novavax vaccine in the UK

Boris Johnson tonight revealed the British drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline will support the manufacturing of up to 60million doses of the Novavax vaccine in the UK

Britain has secured 60million doses of the Novavax vaccine under an advance purchase agreement with the American firm

Britain has secured 60million doses of the Novavax vaccine under an advance purchase agreement with the American firm

Britain has secured 60million doses of the Novavax vaccine under an advance purchase agreement with the American firm 

The GSK site at Barnard Castle is a specialised facility in GSK's global manufacturing network which supports production of GSK pharmaceutical and vaccine products

The GSK site at Barnard Castle is a specialised facility in GSK's global manufacturing network which supports production of GSK pharmaceutical and vaccine products

The GSK site at Barnard Castle is a specialised facility in GSK’s global manufacturing network which supports production of GSK pharmaceutical and vaccine products

The GSK site at Barnard Castle is a specialised facility in GSK’s global manufacturing network which supports production of GSK pharmaceutical and vaccine products.

The protein antigen component of NVX-CoV2373 is also produced in the North East of England by Novavax’s manufacturing partner, FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies, at their site in Billingham, Stockton-on-Tees.

Roger Connor, president of GSK vaccines, said: ‘GSK is delighted to support Novavax and the UK vaccines taskforce with this manufacturing arrangement for the UK and our Barnard Castle facility is now undertaking the rapid preparation work required to manufacture up to 60 million doses of this vaccine.

‘We have ensured that we can deliver these volumes without impacting supply of our other vital medicines and vaccines, and without disruption to the other Covid-19 collaborations GSK is engaged in globally.’

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