Novavax, Inc. (Nasdaq: NVAX) and Xcellerex, have entered into a strategic collaboration to accelerate the development of Novavax's vaccine manufacturing process to commercial scale and begin immediate production of Novavax's novel 2009 H1N1 influenza vaccine for potential commercial sale. Earlier this week, Novavax launched a two-stage, 4,000-patient clinical study of its H1N1 flu vaccine in Mexico to support registration in that country. The two companies will utilize Novavax's unique virus-like particle (VLP) vaccine technology to produce initial commercial quantities of H1N1 vaccine with Xcellerex's FlexFactory biomanufacturing platform. Xcellerex will provide development expertise and product manufacturing in exchange for manufacturing supply fees from Novavax. The partnership will enable rapid, cost-effective, large-scale production of novel Novavax VLP vaccine utilizing Xcellerex's FlexFactory(R) manufacturing solution for Mexico. "We are pleased to apply our state-of-the-art FlexFactory manufacturing technology to enable the rapid, commercial-scale production of H1N1 flu vaccine by Novavax. Our technology offers Novavax a cost-effective and flexible manufacturing solution for this public health crisis by achieving full commercial-scale production of VLP-based vaccines much more rapidly than traditional vaccine production methods," stated Joseph Zakrzewski, Xcellerex's President and Chief Executive Officer. "This strategic partnership represents a major step forward for Novavax and will allow us to increase the scale of our VLP vaccine manufacturing process and expand capacity to satisfy potential demand for our H1N1 VLP vaccine in Mexico. This alliance will also enable us to establish commercial-scale production capabilities for our VLP-based seasonal influenza vaccine program and significantly advance our timeline for full scale manufacturing," said Rahul Singhvi, Novavax's President and Chief Executive Officer.
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Virus-like particles (VLPs) mimic the external structure of viruses but lack the live genetic material that causes viral replication and infection. VLPs can be designed quickly to match individual viral strains and be produced efficiently using portable cell-culture technology. Novavax VLP-based vaccine candidates are produced more rapidly than egg-based vaccines by using proprietary, portable, recombinant cell-culture technology. Novavax, Inc. is a clinical-stage biotechnology company, creating novel vaccines to address a broad range of infectious diseases worldwide, including H1N1, using advanced proprietary virus-like-particle (VLP) technology. The company produces potent VLP -based, recombinant vaccines utilizing new and efficient manufacturing approaches. Novavax is committed to using its VLP technology to create country-specific vaccine solutions. It recently launched a joint venture with Cadila Pharmaceuticals, named CPL Biologicals, to develop and manufacture vaccines, biological therapeutics and diagnostics in India. Xcellerex is revolutionizing the way biomolecules are developed, manufactured and commercialized. The company's unique single-use component technology platform transforms biomanufacturing economics, enabling the development of biotherapeutics and vaccines, and dramatically improving the ability of Xcellerex and its partners to deploy manufacturing capacity. Xcellerex leverages its technology and services platform by: 1) commercializing its FlexFactories® (complete, turnkey, modular production trains) and XDR(TM) (unique, single use component bioreactor systems); 2) building a portfolio of proprietary biotherapeutics and vaccines through creative alliances and in licensing; and 3) creatively structuring transactions around FlexFactories, XDRs and its pipeline.
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