Anna supports communications activities and member coordination for GHTC. Her portfolio includes the development and dissemination of the coalition’s communications materials and digital outreach, facilitating engagement and outreach to coalition members, and supporting all meetings...read more about this author
Research Roundup: A global pandemic treaty, J&J licensing deal, and malaria vaccine rollout
In this regular feature on Breakthroughs, we highlight some of the most interesting reads in global health research from the past week.
Aspen Pharmacare is finalizing an agreement to license the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine in Africa, the company announced last week after signing a non-binding agreement with two J&J subsidiaries. Aspen, which already packages J&J’s vaccine at its factory in South Africa, would be the first company with African rights to distribution, pricing, and branding of the vaccine. The licensing agreement would allow Aspen to launch the vaccine under the name Aspenovax and supply the shot to public-sector markets on the continent through deals with designated multilateral organizations and with governments of African Union member states. Aspen currently has capacity to manufacture up to 300 million doses of the shot, with plans to significantly increase that number to support vaccination across the African continent.
Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, will finance the rollout of the RTS,S/AS01 malaria vaccine—the world’s first approved malaria vaccine and the first vaccine approved for a human parasitic disease—in sub-Saharan Africa. The funding commitment, announced Thursday, will support procurement, technical assistance for vaccine introduction, and other associated costs to enable countries to add the vaccine to immunization programs as an additional tool to combat malaria. The vaccine, developed by GlaxoSmithKline in partnership with PATH and with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, was recommended by the World Health Organization in October for broad use among children at risk in sub-Saharan Africa and other regions that experience significant levels of malaria transmission.