U.S. gets bioterror vax, funds capacity boost

The U.S. government continues to exercise its vaccine muscle. It has received a shipment of a smallpox vaccine for the national stockpile at the same time it is funding process development to increase capacity for making anthrax vaccine.

Bavarian Nordic says it has delivered one million doses of its smallpox vaccine Imvamune for use in the event of a bioterror attack. The prophylactic was developed under Project BioShield, the 2004 program for medicine and vaccine development to protect the American public.

Imvamune was funded by the U.S. Department of HHS' Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) and the NIH. Bavarian Nordic will deliver 20 million doses of the vaccine, with an option for 60 million more.

Meanwhile, Emergent BioSolutions has been awarded a potential $107 million in government funds for manufacturing process enhancements that will triple production capacity for its BioThrax anthrax vaccine. The aim is to increase manufacturing capacity to 26 million doses per year, rising from 7 million to 8 million now. BARDA awarded this contract also. It includes funding for process development, assay validation, and fill/finish activities along with the required clinical studies

- see the Imvamune release
- here's the Emergent story

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