Under the expanded agreement, SK bioscience will reserve additional manufacturing capacity to produce antigen, a key component of NVX-CoV2373, through 2022 with an option to extend the arrangement

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Novavax extends manufacturing agreement with SK bioscience. (Credit: PIRO4D from Pixabay)

Novavax and SK bioscience, a vaccine business subsidiary of Korea-based SK Group, have extended their collaboration and license agreements for Novavax’s recombinant nanoparticle protein-based Covid-19 vaccine, NVX-CoV2373.

Under the expanded agreement, SK bioscience will reserve additional manufacturing capacity to produce antigen, a key component of NVX-CoV2373, through 2022 with an option to extend the arrangement.

NVX-CoV2373 is an investigational vaccine candidate developed from the genetic sequence of SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19 disease.

The latest agreement builds on an advance purchase agreement (APA), announced earlier, between SK bioscience and the Korean government to supply 40 million doses of NVX-CoV2373 for the Republic of Korea.

Novavax president and CEO Stanley Erck said: “SK bioscience and the Korean government continue to be significant partners with Novavax in our efforts to ensure broad access of our Covid-19 vaccine to the citizens of South Korea and beyond.

“This strategic partnership helps to further expand our global network for manufacture and commercialisation of high-quality product and will be an important part of our expected two billion annual doses in total global manufacturing capacity in 2022.”

As part of the agreement, SK bioscience may supply additional quantities of NVX-CoV2373 in the Korean market next year.

Furthermore, SK bioscience has acquired non-exclusive rights to sell doses of Novavax’s vaccine to the governments of Vietnam and Thailand.

SK bioscience CEO Jaeyong Ahn said: “SK bioscience shares Novavax’ sense of urgency to deliver a safe and effective protein-based Covid-19 vaccine to help protect not only South Koreans, but also the global population.

“We are committed to supporting the production of NVX-CoV2373 in South Korea and doing our part in the fight against Covid-19 in partnership with Novavax.”