AstraZeneca To Supply 500K Addl Doses Of Potential COVID-19 Antibody Treatment AZD7442 To US

British drug major AstraZeneca Plc announced its agreement with the US Government to supply up to 500,000 additional doses of potential COVID-19 antibody treatment AZD7442.

Following the announcement, AstraZeneca shares were gaining around 3 percent in the morning trade in London, and more than 1 percent in pre-market activity on Nasdaq.

The company in October 2020 had agreed with the Department of Health and Human Services or HHS and the Department of Defense or DoD to supply for the support of the late-stage development of AZD7442 and for the supply of an initial 100,000 doses of the LAAB combination. The initial deal included the option to acquire additional doses in 2021.

AstraZeneca also has a separate agreement to supply the DoD with 100,000 doses, bringing potential US supplies of AZD7442 to 700,000 in 2021.

The value of the extended deal is $205 million. It is contingent on AZD7442 receiving U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorisation in post-exposure prophylaxis – the ability to prevent COVID-19 in people who have confirmed exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The total value of current agreements with the US Government for the development and supply of AZD7442 in 2021 is about $726 million.

AZD7442 is a long-acting antibody or LAAB combination which is in late-stage development for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19. AZD7442, discovered by Vanderbilt University Medical Center and licensed to AstraZeneca in June 2020, is a combination of two LAABs derived from convalescent patients after SARS-CoV-2 infection.

It is currently being evaluated in five late-stage prevention and treatment trials in more than 9,000 participants around the world.

Pascal Soriot, Chief Executive Officer, said, “The long-acting antibody combination has the potential to offer almost immediate protection to those who are not able to be vaccinated, to both prevent infection or treat the disease in patients already infected with the virus. The US Government’s support is critical in helping accelerate the development of AZD7442, which we believe will be an important tool in the fight against COVID-19.”

AstraZeneca said it does not expect the modified deal would impact financial guidance for 2021.

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