The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), CSL and The University of Queensland (UQ) have entered into a partnering agreement to accelerate the development, manufacture and distribution of a COVID-19 vaccine candidate which has been pioneered by researchers at UQ.
The agreement formalises the support provided by CSL to UQ and CEPI from the outset of the pandemic earlier this year.
CEPI and CSL will fund the development and manufacture of UQ’s “molecular clamp” enabled vaccine for COVID-19.
Funding contributions will be used to provide support for the pending phase 1 safety study being led by UQ followed by subsequent late stage clinical trials, and industrial-scale manufacturing to allow the production of potentially millions of doses a year, should the product be approved.
The initial phase of large-scale production of the UQ COVID-19 vaccine is planned to take place at CSL’s biotech manufacturing facilities in Melbourne, Australia.
While there are a number of critical milestones to be met before the vaccine can be considered successful, CSL anticipates that the production technology can be scaled to produce up to one hundred million doses towards the end of 2021.
CSL would also subcontract other global manufacturers to increase the number of doses that can be produced and broaden the geographical distribution of vaccine production.
Should clinical trials be successful, a vaccine could be available for distribution in 2021.