Monday, April 25, 2022

Nearing a COVID-19 vaccine approval in China, Fosun gears up to launch BioNTech shot: report


China’s approval of the mRNA COVID-19 vaccine developed by BioNTech appears likely within the next few months and thanks to a deal made between the biotech and China’s Fosun Pharma, the shot will be ready for production and distribution almost immediately, a source told Global Times.

Scoring approval in China for a vaccine from the west is a significant milestone in a country that has five domestic vaccines of questionable quality. Under a prior agreement, struck by BioNTech and Fosun in March 2020, the Chinese drugmaker is assisting with local development. Fosun will also be in charge of commercialization in China if the shot is approved.

Fosun has readied a storage facility in the Pudong section of Shanghai for the launch, Global Times reports. Workers there have conducted drills to test the cold-chain transportation system that will be key in distributing the vaccine.

As the lone mRNA vaccine in China, BioNTech’s shot could provide a valuable alternative to the shots already available. Other vaccines in the country have won approvals despite questionable effectiveness. 

Earlier this month, one of the country’s top disease control officials, in a rare admission, said that the Chinese vaccines offered a low level of protection against the virus and suggested that mixing them might improve their effectiveness.

Two of the vaccines, produced by state-run firms Sinopharm and Sinovac, have a chance to gain legitimacy in the coming weeks as they are set to be reviewed by the World Health Organization. The WHO already has signed off on the vaccines from AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson and is seeking more suppliers to meet global demand, especially in developing countries.

RELATED: Sinovac aims to pump out 2B COVID-19 vaccine doses a year, courtesy of 3rd production line

Another sign that China is willing to endorse western vaccines came this week with news that it will accept travelers who have been vaccinated with shots from Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson. China previously allowed only travelers who had received domestic vaccines.

It is not the first time China has engaged with a western firm for COVID-19 vaccine production. In August of last year, AstraZeneca signed a similar development, production and commercialization deal with BioKangtai, which agreed to manufacture 100 million doses of the jab by the end of 2020. 

RELATED: AstraZeneca takes COVID-19 vaccine to China with BioKangtai deal for 200M-dose capacity by 2021

Meanwhile, Fosun is ramping up for the anticipated approval of the jab and is working on supply agreements. One of those, finalized late last year, is to provide 7.5 million vaccine doses to Hong Kong.



Source link

Latest Articles

Widely used chemical linked to 1,00,000 US deaths per year: Study

NEW YORK: Daily exposure to phthalates, a group of chemicals used in everything from plastic containers to makeup, may lead to approximately 100,000 deaths...

Foods to Reduce Inflammation and Strengthen the Immune System

Did you know that you can greatly reduce inflammation and boost your immune system by simply incorporating more anti-inflammatory foods and beverages into your...

Personal Selling

INTRODUCTION Early sellers and traders were not held in high esteem. The Roman word for salesman meant ‘Cheater’ and...

Building Muscle on a Vegan Diet

There are a lot of  misconceptions surrounding veganism. The notion that those who practice it are lacking in protein and therefore muscles is the...

Electrodes in brain new hope for severe cases of epilepsy

Neurosurgeons at All India Institute of Medical Sciences have devised a new technique for operating on children suffering from a severe form of epilepsy...