Merck (MSD outside Canada and the US) has signed an agreement with Thermo Fisher Scientific to manufacture molnupiravir, an investigational oral antiviral medicine to treat Covid-19.
This deal is part of Merck’s commitment to make the drug available across the globe, following approval for use by regulatory bodies.
Merck, in collaboration with Ridgeback Biotherapeutics, is developing this oral medicine.
Thermo Fisher’s production facility site in Ontario, will manufacture molnupiravir for distribution in Canada and the UK in addition to markets in the EU, Asia Pacific and Latin America, subject to approvals in the local markets.
The Ontario facility is one of three manufacturing locations in the world for this therapy.
On 3 December, Merck also announced signing of a supply agreement with the Canadian government for molnupiravir.
This agreement will secure the government with access to 500,000 patient courses, with also options for up to 500,000 more in 2022.
Merck Canada president and managing director Marwan Akar said: “We are honoured to be partnering with the federal and provincial governments in support of our country’s preparedness against Covid-19. We can learn from this experience and apply the same determination to grow the life sciences sector more broadly, to help fight the world’s health challenges.”
Thermo Fisher Scientific North America vice president for drug product Michelle Logan said: “Thermo Fisher is proud to join Merck’s global manufacturing network to provide support for the production of its investigational oral treatment for Covid-19.”