On December 28, 2020, Novavax, Inc. (Nasdaq: NVAX), a late-stage biotechnology company developing next-generation vaccines for serious infectious diseases, announced initiation of PREVENT-19, its pivotal Phase 3 study in the United States and Mexico to evaluate the efficacy, safety and immunogenicity of NVX-CoV2373, the company’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate. The trial builds on research from Phase 1/2 studies demonstrating that the vaccine provoked a robust immune response, generated highly neutralizing antibodies against the virus, and was generally well-tolerated. “With the COVID-19 pandemic raging around the globe, this trial is a critical step in building the global portfolio of safe and effective vaccines to protect the world’s population,” said Stanley C. Erck, MBA, President and Chief Executive Officer, Novavax. “We thank our colleagues and partners who continue to work with us to urgently advance our commercial-scale manufacturing processes, and we are grateful for the hard work and assistance from Operation Warp Speed, the U.S. FDA, and the government of Mexico on this program.” NVX-CoV2373 contains a full-length, prefusion spike protein made using Novavax’ recombinant nanoparticle technology and the company’s proprietary saponin-based Matrix-M™ adjuvant. The purified protein is encoded by the genetic sequence of the SARS-CoV-2 spike (S) protein and is produced in insect cells. It can neither cause COVID-19 nor can it replicate, is stable at 2°C to 8°C and is shipped in a ready-to-use liquid formulation that permits distribution using standard vaccine supply chain channels.
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