Canada has announced that Federal Innovation Minister François-Philippe Champagne will sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the U.S. COVID-19 vaccine developer Moderna, Inc. to build a state-of-the-art mRNA vaccine production facility in Canada.
As per the press release by the federal government, the MOU outlines how Moderna plans to establish a Canadian mRNA vaccine facility and work as a valued partner in Canada’s life sciences ecosystem by creating jobs and collaborating on domestic research and development.
Announcing the deal Chief Executive Officer of Moderna, Stéphane Bancel said in a statement, “I would like to thank the Government of Canada for the partnership they have built with us and for their faith in our data, science and early confidence in our mRNA platform in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Moderna says the collaboration aims to provide Canadians with access to a domestically manufactured portfolio of mRNA vaccines against respiratory viruses, including COVID-19, seasonal influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and potential other vaccines, pending licensure.
The site for the vaccine production facility has not been announced, but the company expects to have the Canadian facility operating by 2024.
Canada’s Budget 2021 provides a total of $2.2 billion over seven years toward growing a vibrant domestic life sciences sector and securing pandemic preparedness.
As of August 4th, Moderna has delivered 18,040,190 COVID-19 vaccine doses to Canada.
Moderna says the Phase 3 COVE study demonstrated that vaccination with the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine showed 93% efficacy, with this efficacy remaining durable six months after the administration of the second dose.
Pfizer and Moderna are the only two mRNA vaccines currently available against COVID-19.
Moderna was founded in 2010, and according to the company website, they have developed of therapeutics and vaccines for infectious diseases, immuno-oncology, rare diseases, cardiovascular diseases and auto-immune diseases.