Johnson & Johnson Announces Participation in New Collaboration Funded by the UK to Support Vaccines for Pandemic Preparedness
– Janssen joins forces with UK government and multiple academic and industrial partners to support creation of Vaccine Manufacturing and Innovation Centre –
New Brunswick, N.J., Dec. 3, 2018 – Johnson & Johnson today announced that Janssen Vaccines & Prevention B.V., part of its Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies, will participate in a new collaboration with the UK government and multiple partners from academia and industry that will result in the UK’s first-ever dedicated Vaccine Manufacturing and Innovation Centre (VMIC).
UK Research and Innovation will invest £66 million in the centre as part of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) Medicines Manufacturing programme. VMIC will enable the development and manufacture of vaccines for clinical trials and for emergency outbreak response and preparedness.
“Infectious diseases with pandemic potential need to be proactively addressed, in advance of outbreaks occurring, and developing new vaccines is a central part of any preparedness strategy,” said Paul Stoffels, M.D., Vice Chairman of the Executive Committee and Chief Scientific Officer, Johnson & Johnson. “We applaud the UK’s leadership in mobilizing partners from the across the public, private and academic sectors to tackle this challenge.”
The VMIC is planned to be operational in Oxford by 2022, and will be a purpose-built facility capable of supporting multiple technologies, allowing for academic and industry collaboration on the development and manufacture of vaccines.
Three academic institutions will be engaged in VMIC: the Jenner Institute (a partnership between the University of Oxford and the Pirbright Institute), Imperial College, and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. Additional funding of £10 million will come from commercial and other partners, including Janssen Vaccines & Prevention B.V. and Merck Sharp and Dohme (MSD), who will also share their extensive experience in the design and construction of such a facility, and in vaccine manufacturing and development. GE Healthcare will provide in-kind support on engineering and training.
“We are delighted to collaborate on this important initiative with the UK government and this impressive consortium of partners,” said Johan Van Hoof, M.D., Global Therapeutic Area Head IDV, Vaccines, Janssen Pharmaceuticals R&D and Managing Director, Janssen Vaccines & Prevention B.V., who will be joining the governing board of VMIC. “Only by working in common cause can we achieve the goal of pandemic preparedness. If we take action now, working together, we can prevent the pandemics of the future. We are delighted to support this vital mission.”
The VMIC is being launched to enable the rapid manufacture of vaccines in the event of an epidemic affecting the UK. It will also enable a rapid global response to emerging highly infectious pathogens. Additionally, VMIC aims to develop new technologies such as personalized cancer vaccines and vectors for gene therapy.
“Improving the development, production and application of new vaccines against infectious diseases requires expertise and collaboration across academia and industry,” said UK Research and Innovation Chief Executive Professor Sir Mark Walport. “The Vaccine Manufacturing and Innovation Centre will play an important role in bringing expertise from industry and academia together to ensure we are prepared to respond to the threats of serious infections, including viruses with the potential to cause major national or global epidemics.”
Johnson & Johnson Commitment to Pandemic Preparedness
The collaboration in VMIC is the latest example of Johnson & Johnson’s ongoing commitment to global pandemic preparedness efforts. We are one of the few innovative healthcare companies in the world today that is actively engaged across multiple disease areas that are central to this challenge. Through our Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies, we are actively engaged in developing new vaccines and/or treatments to combat a wide range of infectious diseases that are already pandemics, such as HIV and tuberculosis (TB), or that have pandemic potential, including Ebola, Zika, and influenza.
During the 2014-2016 Ebola epidemic in West Africa, Johnson & Johnson accelerated development of Janssen’s investigational Ebola vaccine program with a significant company commitment and global public-private collaborations that have supported numerous clinical trials across three continents. We remain committed to working in collaboration with partners to achieve licensure for the Janssen Ebola vaccine regimen and are also maintaining a stockpile of two million regimens in support of outbreak preparedness.
In January 2017 at Davos, Johnson & Johnson joined other global partners for the launch of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). Building on lessons learned during recent Ebola and Zika outbreaks, CEPI’s mission is to help stimulate and finance the development of new vaccines for emerging infectious diseases with epidemic potential by bringing together the expertise and resources of the public, private and academic sectors.
In September 2018, Janssen announced a collaboration with CEPI and The Jenner Institute at the University of Oxford to develop and manufacture a vaccine against Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV). The collaboration will also work to advance novel vaccines against the Lassa and Nipah viruses.
About Johnson & Johnson
At Johnson & Johnson, we believe good health is the foundation of vibrant lives, thriving communities and forward progress. That’s why for more than 130 years, we have aimed to keep people well at every age and every stage of life. Today, as the world’s largest and most broadly-based healthcare company, we are committed to using our reach and size for good. We strive to improve access and affordability, create healthier communities, and put a healthy mind, body and environment within reach of everyone, everywhere. We are blending our heart, science and ingenuity to profoundly change the trajectory of health for humanity.
About the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson
At the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, we are working to create a world without disease. Transforming lives by finding new and better ways to prevent, intercept, treat and cure disease inspires us. We bring together the best minds and pursue the most promising science. We are Janssen. We collaborate with the world for the health of everyone in it. Learn more at www.janssen.com. Follow us at @JanssenGlobal. Janssen Vaccines & Prevention B.V. is part of the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson.
Cautions Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 related to a new collaboration and product development. The reader is cautioned not to rely on these forward-looking statements. These statements are based on current expectations of future events. If underlying assumptions prove inaccurate or known or unknown risks or uncertainties materialize, actual results could vary materially from the expectations and projections of Janssen Vaccines & Prevention B.V., any of the other Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies and/or Johnson & Johnson. Risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: the potential that the expected benefits and opportunities related to the collaboration may not be realized or may take longer to realize than expected; challenges inherent in new product development, including the uncertainty of clinical success and obtaining regulatory approvals; competition, including technological advances, new products and patents attained by competitors; uncertainty of commercial success for new products; the ability of the company to successfully execute strategic plans; impact of business combinations and divestitures; challenges to patents; changes in behavior and spending patterns or financial distress of purchasers of health care products and services; and global health care reforms and trends toward health care cost containment. A further list and descriptions of these risks, uncertainties and other factors can be found in Johnson & Johnson’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2017, including in the sections captioned “Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements” and “Item 1A. Risk Factors,” in the company’s most recently filed Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q and in the company’s subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Copies of these filings are available online at www.sec.gov, www.jnj.com or on request from Johnson & Johnson. Neither the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies nor Johnson & Johnson undertakes to update any forward-looking statement as a result of new information or future events or developments.