Valneva reaches vaccine settlement with UK government

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Valneva has reached a settlement agreement with the British government regarding the termination of the supply contract for its Covid-19 vaccine candidate, VLA2001.

On September 13, it received a termination notice from the government, after beginning the production process at its factory outside Livingston.

Some 100 million doses of the vaccine have been ordered after the UK increased its request by 40 million last February.

Later last autumn, Health Secretary Sajid Javid told the House of Commons that the vaccine would not have won UK regulatory approval.

Valneva’s chief financial officer, David Lawrence, responded that the comments had had a “devastating impact” on the company – and that she was looking for excuses.

Shortly after, the former chair of the country’s vaccine task force, Dame Kate Bingham, criticized the decision, saying it was not only a blow to international pandemic efforts, but that would weaken the UK’s resilience to future outbreaks.

Yesterday’s settlement resolves certain issues relating to company and government obligations, including in relation to the separate UK clinical trial agreement for VLA2001, which remains in effect.

VLA2001 is currently the only whole virus, inactivated and adjuvanted vaccine candidate in clinical trials against Covid-19 in Europe. It is intended for the active immunization of populations at risk. It may also be suitable for boosting, as repeated booster vaccinations have been shown to work well with inactivated whole-virus vaccines.

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