Moderna, Thermo Fisher shake on 15-year manufacturing deal

Feb. 24, 2022

Moderna and Thermo Fisher Scientific are going steady, signing a 15-year deal for Thermo Fisher to manufacture Moderna’s Spikevax COVID-19 vaccine.

According to the agreement, Thermo Fisher will be responsible for the large-scale manufacturing of Spikevax and other investigational mRNA drugs Moderna is developing.

Thermo Fisher, based out of Massachusetts, will provide a range of aseptic, or germ-free, fill-finish services. These services will include freeze-dry and liquid filling practices. The company will also take care of inspection, labeling and final packaging services for the products it manufactures.

“We are pleased to further expand our collaboration with Thermo Fisher as a long-term manufacturing partner that will enable us to continue to build on our mRNA platform and pipeline,” said Juan Andres, Moderna’s chief technical operations and quality officer.

This isn’t the first time the duo has collaborated. Moderna and Thermo Fisher have worked together for several years with Thermo Fisher providing clinical research and contract manufacturing services to support Moderna’s pipeline. Last June, Moderna announced Thermo Fisher would be responsible for manufacturing hundreds of millions of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine at the CDMO's facility in Greenville, North Carolina.

Moderna tried to ramp up vaccine production in the last year, tapping other companies, including Baxter, for help with expanded production. According to an announcement last March, Baxter would help fill and package 60-90 million doses of Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine in 2021.

Even with the added manufacturing capabilities, Moderna struggled to meet its proposed manufacturing estimates in 2021. Last year, the company forecast it would make 800 million to 1 billion doses of its vaccine in 2021. However, in November, the company changed its estimate to between 700 and 800 million.