For Large Scale Manufacture of SARS-COV-2 Antibodies for Potential COVID-19 Treatment

South Korea based Samsung Biologics and US based Vir Biotechnology, Inc. have announced a manufacturing agreement under which Samsung Biologics will perform large scale manufacturing services for Vir’s SARS-CoV-2 monoclonal antibody (mAb) program.

Vir’s lead SARS-CoV-2 mAb development candidates, VIR-7831 and VIR-7832, have demonstrated high affinity for the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and are highly potent in neutralizing SARS-CoV-2 in live-virus cellular assays. Vir plans to proceed directly into a phase 2 clinical trial within the next three to five months. This agreement builds on Vir’s previously announced manufacturing agreement with WuXi Biologics and its letter of intent with Biogen, Inc.

Under the deal valued at approximately $362 million, Samsung Biologics is expected to commence its manufacturing as early as October with the first engineering run, with potential commercial batches to be manufactured starting in 2021 in Plant 3. The parties will continue to negotiate additional terms in a definitive agreement and will use best efforts to execute a definitive agreement before July 31, 2020.