Vaccine firm Tianjin CanSino Biologics has extended a research alliance to provide contract services for AstraZeneca’s mRNA vaccine program.

Richard Daverman

August 21, 2023

2 Min Read
CanSino and AstraZeneca form mRNA vaccine collaboration
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Vaccine firm Tianjin CanSino Biologics has extended a research alliance to provide contract development and manufacturing services for AstraZeneca’s messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccine program.

CanSino, which said it would manufacture and supply unspecified mRNA products to AstraZeneca, has an mRNA candidate that has completed China Phase II trials for COVID. AstraZeneca said the deal would support investigational mRNA vaccines in its early pipeline.

In November 2022, the two companies announced they were collaborating to bring rare disease therapies to the China market. Financial details of the latest agreement were not disclosed.

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“AstraZeneca is working on next-generation technologies to develop vaccines and monoclonal antibodies for infectious diseases where there is high unmet need,” the company said, adding it would share more details as the candidates advance.

Earlier this year, CanSino said it was in discussion with Chinese regulators around the protocol for a late-stage study of the company’s mRNA candidate for COVID, CS-2034, as a booster shot. It expects to complete the Phase III study this year. If the vaccine is approved, the company is working to reduce the costs of making and deploying its mRNA vaccine, undercutting the $120 list price of Pfizer’s candidate in the US.

In their earlier research collaboration, CanSino and AstraZeneca agreed to develop CanSino’s ACYW135 Meningococcal Conjugate Vaccine (CRM197) for different age groups, develop an MCV4 meningitis vaccine and complement inhibitors in China for related indications and expand R&D to international markets.

Headquartered in Cambridge, UK, AstraZeneca claims to be China’s largest multinational biopharma with 2021 revenues of $6 billion.

CanSino has two approved vaccines for COVID: Convidecia, a Recombinant Novel Coronavirus Vaccine (Adenovirus Type 5 Vector) and an inhaled version of Convidecia. It also has an approved vaccine for Ebola along with two vaccines for meningitis.

Incorporated in 2009, CanSino has developed five integrated platform technologies – viral vector-based technology, synthetic vaccine technology, protein structure design and recombinant technology, mRNA technology – along with formulation and delivery capabilities. Its pipeline consists of 17 vaccines addressing 12 diseases, including the Recombinant Novel Coronavirus Vaccine (Adenovirus Type 5 Vector) conditionally approved in 2021.

A version of this article was first published in ChinaBio Today on Aug 9, 2023 

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