Johnson & Johnson announced that it has made a commitment of up to $200 million to accelerate and expand the production of an Ebola vaccine program in development at its Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies. According to a press release, the company is closely collaborating with the World Health Organization (WHO), the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), as well as other key stakeholders, governments, and public health authorities on the clinical testing, development, production and distribution of the vaccine regimen. Their goal is to produce millions of doses for use next year.
The vaccine regimen, which was discovered in a collaborative research program with the National Institutes of Health (NIH), combines a Janssen preventative vaccine with a vaccine from Bavarian Nordic, a biotechnology company based in Denmark. This combination vaccine regimen has shown promising results in preclinical studies, J&J says, and is now planned to be tested for safety and immunogenicity in healthy volunteers in Europe, the United States of America and Africa starting in early January. Janssen is targeting production of more than one million doses of the vaccine regimen in 2015, 250,000 of which are expected to be released for broad application in clinical trials by May 2015.
Johnson & Johnson is striving to produce at least 1 million doses of its two-step vaccine next year and has already discussed collaboration with Britain's GlaxoSmithKline, which is working on a rival vaccine, according to a Reuters article.
Read the J&J press release