Equipped with advanced production lines, Samsung Biologics' facilities will support the production of hundreds of millions of doses of Moderna's Covid-19 vaccine


Samsung Biologics' Drug Product Manufacturing. (Credit: Samsung Biologics.)

Moderna has reached a manufacturing services and supply agreement with Samsung Biologics for large-scale commercial fill-finish manufacturing of its Covid-19 vaccine.

Samsung Biologics is a CDMO, engaged in providing fully integrated end-to-end contract development and manufacturing services.

Upon execution of the agreement, Moderna will immediately share the vaccine manufacturing technology with Samsung Biologics’ facilities in Incheon, South Korea.

The facilities are equipped with advanced production lines for aseptic fill-finish, labelling, and packaging services, to support the production of hundreds of millions of doses of Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine, said the company.

Samsung Biologics CEO John Rim said: “This vaccine is paramount to people around the world in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, and we truly appreciate our client Moderna for entrusting and choosing to partner with Samsung Biologics for the fill and finish of this important vaccine.

“Due to the high level of urgency in supplying the vaccine to the global population, we have set immediate action plans and schedule to make mRNA-1273 available for commercial distribution in the early second half of 2021.”

The messenger RNA (mRNA)-based vaccine candidate mRNA-1273 was 94.1% effective in preventing Covid-19 illness in people who received two doses.

The US-based biotech firm intends to supply the vaccine doses produced at the Samsung Biologics’ facilities to markets outside of the US, in the third quarter of 2021.

In other news, Moderna has reached two Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with the government of South Korea to explore collaboration on its mRNA Vaccines.

The company has signed the first MoU with the Korea National Institute of Health (KNIH), an agency of the Korea Centres for Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA), for a new collaboration on mRNA vaccine research in South Korea.

The other MoU is with the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy of the Republic of Korea (MOTIE), the Ministry of Health and Welfare of the Republic of Korea (MOHW) to explore opportunities for local production of mRNA vaccines in South Korea.

Moderna chief technical operations and quality officer Juan Andres said: “We are pleased to partner with Samsung Biologics for this fill and finish manufacturing, which will help us continue to scale up our manufacturing capacity outside of the US. We and our manufacturing partners remain committed to defeating the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The company has previously signed agreements with Baxter International, Catalent, and French pharmaceutical firm Sanofi to manufacture its Covid-19 vaccine.