Paragon Bioservices, Inc. has announced that it has been awarded a JVAP-CBMS contract from the Department of Defense (DoD) for the vaccine development and subsequent GMP manufacturing of the "VEE Replicon Particle Trivalent Filovirus Vaccine."
The initial phase of the contract is valued at ~$15 million-with future optional CLINs that, if exercised, would more than double that amount.
According to Marco Chacon, PhD, CEO of Paragon, "My colleagues and I are honored to be selected for this contract-one that includes the application of great science and bioprocess toward better public health and National Preparedness. It doesn't get any better than this for a CMO."
Paragon's extensive expertise in virus and vaccine (VLP) production and purification will be enhanced through a collaboration with world-recognized virologists and vaccine experts from the University of Maryland School of Medicine (Baltimore, MD) and Harrisvaccines (Ames, IA).
There are currently no licensed vaccines or treatments against filoviruses, even though there is up to a 90% fatality rate in humans, which makes them a potential agent of bioterrorism.
Paragon will develop a large-scale mammalian process that is suitable for cGMP manufacturing.
This contract is being performed in parallel to a contract that the US Army awarded Paragon in October 2010, which involves process development and scale-up production to support the efficacy and potency of filovirus vaccine candidates against deadly Ebola and Marburg viruses.