Moderna Inc is expecting to manufacture up to 3 billion doses of its Cvoid-19 vaccine in 2022 by boosting its manufacturing capacity, the company said on Thursday. It also added that it estimates for vaccine production for 2021 will also increase to be3tween 800 million and 1 billion shots compared to the company’s previous lower range of 700 million.
The number of lower-dose formulations for boosters and immunizations for children will ultimately decide on the final number of inoculations. Currently, 100 micrograms of vaccine substance is deployed for one of its vaccine shots by Moderna. However the company said that only 50 micrograms per dose may be used for future shots.
“As we look forward to next year, we just see so much need for primary vaccine, we are hearing it all over the world, and also boosters,” Moderna President Stephen Hoge said in an interview.
“So depending upon… how much the ordering that happens is third doses or pediatric doses at 50 micrograms, we could see up to 3 billion doses,” he added.
Previously the company had forecast manufacturing of 1.4 billion shots in 2022.
Based on new data, Moderna has said that it is now possible to safely store its Covid-19 vaccines at refrigerator temperatures for up to three months which will make it easier to get the vaccines to the areas that are hard to reach where there may not be availability of freezers.
“That might be a breakthrough that really matters in 2022 in Africa and across lower and middle income countries,” Hoge said.
Following safety concerns and production issues with the Covid-19 vaccines from AstraZeneca Plc and Johnson & Johnson which essentially sidelined those two companies, many of the wealthier governments have been trying to stock up on the vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer Inc/BioNTech.
There are parts of the world that are currently facing sharp growth in infections and struggling to acquire needed shots even as the rich countries speed up their vaccine rollouts.
For example, the daily infections of coronavirus in India are more than 300,000 with more than 2,000 daily deaths since the last one week. At the same time, only 10 per cent of its more than 1.3 billion people have been delivered a single dose of Covid-19 vaccine while just about 20 million have been fully inoculated.
Output at a drug substance plant in Switzerland run by Lonza Group is planned to by doubled by Moderna while increase production capabilities by more than double at a Spain-based facility owned by Laboratorios Farmaceuticos ROVI SA. There will be 50 per cent boost to the production capacities at the company’s plants in the United States.
Moderna’s two-dose vaccine uses messenger-RNA technology that programs cells to build immunity to the novel coronavirus.
(Adapted from MoneyControl.com)