Under the terms of the agreement, Novocol Pharma will provide fill-finish and packaging for vaccines manufactured at Moderna’s Laval-based mRNA manufacturing facility
US-based mRNA vaccines maker Moderna has signed a long-term agreement with Novocol Pharma for aseptic fill-finish, labelling and packaging of its mRNA respiratory vaccines, to be produced in Canada.
Novocol is a Canada-based pharmaceutical company that offers contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) for sterile injectables.
According to the US-based mRNA vaccines maker, fill-finish sterile manufacturing is the final step in the production cycle and includes transferring the product into vials and packaging.
Under the terms of the agreement, Novocol Pharma will provide fill-finish and packaging for vaccines manufactured at Moderna’s Laval-based mRNA manufacturing facility.
The mRNA production unit is anticipated to become operational by the end of 2024.
Moderna chief technical operations and quality officer Jerh Collins said: “Canada’s scientific expertise and biomanufacturing capabilities make it a key and strategic country for Moderna as we expand our mRNA technology capabilities globally.
“Novocol Pharma exemplifies best-in-class experience, capabilities, manufacturing systems, and controls required to prepare our mRNA vaccines and scale up production as needed to address novel or emerging viruses.”
The Government of Ontario, through the Ontario Together Fund, has awarded Moderna a grant to support the complex manufacturing capabilities needed to fill and finish the mRNA vaccines.
Moderna said that the partnership with Novocol will support the Government of Canada’s investments under Canada’s Biomanufacturing and Life Sciences Strategy.
The investments aim to provide onshore respiratory vaccine manufacturing capabilities and support national pandemic readiness for all Canadians.
In addition, the agreement will expand its footprint and investment in Canada to provide mRNA vaccines and create high-skilled jobs in this sector, said the US vaccine maker.
Moderna Canada president and general manager Patricia Gauthier said: “Moderna is pleased to be growing a bigger presence in Ontario through our agreement with Novocol Pharma, thanks in part to the important contribution from the Government of Ontario.
“Today’s announcement complements our activities in Quebec and contributes to Moderna’s long-term partnership with the Federal Government to provide onshore respiratory vaccine manufacturing capabilities and support national pandemic readiness for all Canadians.”