June 16, 2020 / 9:05 AM / 20 days ago

Cobra Biologics signs AstraZeneca deal to supply COVID-19 vaccine

Scientists are seen working at Cobra Biologics, they are working on a potential vaccine for COVID-19, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Keele, Britain, April 30, 2020. REUTERS/Carl Recine

LONDON (Reuters) - Cobra Biologics on Tuesday said it had signed a supply agreement with AstraZeneca (AZN.L) to manufacture its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, with a view to a first delivery of the potential vaccine to Britain in September.

Cobra is one of the firms that has been working to manufacture the vaccine, which was initially being developed by scientists at the University of Oxford.

The vaccine is now known as AZD1222 after AstraZeneca joined forces with the university to develop, produce and distribute the vaccine candidate.

In May, the chief executive of Cobra Biologics said it could be ready to produce 1 million doses a month, and would still have a part to play in making the vaccine after the AstraZeneca agreement with the University of Oxford.

“Cobra hit the ground running with AstraZeneca and other manufacturing organisations to provide large-scale manufacturing capacity of AZD1222 vaccine,” the company said in a statement.

“Cobra, along with other consortium members, will be manufacturing the vaccine with first deliveries to begin in the UK in September 2020.”

Cobra Biologics did not disclose financial details or the size of the supply agreement.

Reporting by Alistair Smout; editing by Barbara Lewis

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