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MSD announced collaboration with Brazilian non-profit over development of dengue vaccine

Published on 13/12/18 at 10:53am

US firm Merck & Co have announced a collaboration with the Brazilian non-profit Instituto Butantan, with the intention of developing vaccines for mosquito-borne virus dengue fever.

The pair have licensed rights from the NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for the development of live, attenuated tetravalent vaccines.

Insituto Butantan’s dengue fever vaccine candidate TV003, is currently being evaluated in a large Phase 3 study in Brazil.

 “By sharing data from our ongoing vaccine development programs, Instituto Butantan and Merck are better positioned to achieve our goal of reducing the significant human and economic toll of dengue virus in Brazil and around the world,”  Dr. Dimas Covas, director, Instituto Butantan said in a statement. “We look forward to collaborating with Merck, an established global leader in vaccine development.”

“Under the agreement, Merck and Instituto Butantan have agreed to collaborate to share clinical data and other learnings from their respective dengue vaccine development programs, both derived from licensed materials from the NIAID. Instituto Butantan will receive a $26 million upfront payment from Merck and is eligible to receive up to $75 million for the achievement of certain milestones related to the development and commercialization of Merck’s investigational vaccine as well as potential royalties on sales. Instituto Butantan will retain responsibility for the manufacturing and commercialization of their investigational vaccine, TV003, in Brazil.”

Previously Instituto Butantan and MSD have collaborated on HPV and Hepatitis A vaccine products.

“This agreement recognizes the tremendous progress that scientists and clinicians at the Instituto Butantan have made in developing their investigational dengue virus vaccine,” said Dr. Roger M. Perlmutter, president, Merck Research Laboratories. “Through our new collaboration, we together have made a commitment to help protect people around the world who are at risk of developing dengue virus disease.”

Louis Goss

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