Friday Apr 02, 2021
KARACHI: Pakistan's Searle has signed an agreement with a Chinese pharmaceutical group to manufacture the coronavirus vaccine in Pakistan.
“The Searle Company has concluded an exclusive licensing and supply agreement with Livzon Mapharm Inc. for the recombinant novel coronavirus vaccine (V-01). The licencing agreement also covers the manufacturing transition of (V-01) in Pakistan,” a bourse filing said on Thursday.
The recombinant novel COVID-19 vaccine developed by Livzon has shown promising results in phase I and II clinical trials.
The phase-Ill clinical study will include multiple countries and enroll more than 20,000 subjects, with the aim to evaluate the efficacy, safety, and immunogenicity of V-01 programme.
Among the many new COVID-19 vaccine projects being developed around the world, V-01 has many potential advantages such as strong safety profile, high neutralising antibody titre in vivo, long durability, and easy to scale up for manufacturing.
Pakistan has one of the lowest rates of vaccination against coronavirus, with fewer than 0.3 people vaccinated per 100 members of the population.
On Thursday, Pakistan reported 5,234 new coronavirus cases and 83 deaths, with the most deaths occurring in Punjab.
The pandemic has triggered one of the most severe recessions in nearly a century and is causing enormous damage to people’s jobs and health. This has led to many businesses shut down temporarily and widespread restrictions on travel and mobility.
“Searle is confident that in [the] existing pandemic, the relevant authorities will take up the matter on urgent basis and support for fast-track approval to carry out phase III clinical trials in Pakistan,” the company said.
“Searle is poised to grow and increase its market share among its competitors and maintain its organic and inorganic growth, in a relatively turbulent regulatory environment. While also focusing on its product demand in international market, coupled with increased healthcare spending trend after COVID-19, which will translate into greater revenues for the industry.”
Livzon Pharmaceutical Group was founded in 1985, listed on Hong Kong and Shenzhen stock exchanges. In FY2020, Livzon Group recorded operating income of around $1.6 billion, and net profit of $315 million.