As the pendulum of vaccinating the world against COVID-19 begins to swing to developing countries, Moderna (NSDQ:MRNA) will build an mRNA facility in Africa that could produce as many as 500 million 50-µg vaccine doses annually.
Its currently authorized booster has a 100-µg dose of mRNA, but the company aims to use a 50-µg dose for boosters.
Moderna is prepared to invest up to $500 million in building the facility, which would house equipment for drug substance manufacturing and potentially fill/finish and packaging.
The company has not yet selected a site for the facility but said it plans on beginning the selection process soon.
While COVID-19 vaccine production is its initial focus, Moderna’s CEO Stephane Bancel has stressed that the company has grander ambitions. Its pipeline has 20 prophylactic vaccine candidates for a range of viruses. In addition, it has several other investigational therapeutics in development.
In related news, Poli…