Samsung BioLogics has clinched a deal to manufacture a candidate treatment for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) currently being developed by a U.S. pharmaceutical company.
The South Korean pharmaceutical company signed on Friday a letter of intent with U.S. drug firm Vir Biotechnology. The contract is worth 441.8 billion won, which is the largest single contract that the company has signed since it went public in 2016.
Vir Biotechnology is developing a single clone antibody for COVID-19 by separating antibodies (SARS-CoV-2 mAb) from those completely cured from severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). The company is better poised now to receive a faster approval for the drug as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted a fast-track designation of the antibody as a possible therapy to cure COVID-19 patients.
At the factory 3 in Songdo, Incheon starting next year, Samsung BioLogics will mass produce the drug after the technological transfer based on different phases of antibody development.
“With the latest LOI that is legally binding, we can receive the full amount on the contract even if the candidate antibody of Vir fails to get the final approval as treatments for COVID-19,” said an insider of Samsung BioLogics.