Valneva said today it will supply process development services for GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) toward manufacturing influenza vaccines based on Valneva’s EB66® cell line.

The value of the collaboration was not disclosed, though Valneva said the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) will oversee and finance part of the advanced development program.

Under its new R&D collaboration agreement, Valneva will conduct an R&D program on behalf of GSK to develop and improve upstream processes to be used in manufacturing the flu vaccines.

Valneva will receive additional research fees under the new agreement in addition to the milestone payments and royalties associated with future sales that the company is entitled under the exclusive commercial license granted to GSK in 2007 to develop and market worldwide pandemic and seasonal human flu vaccines using EB66.

Derived from duck embryonic stem cells, EB66 is intended as an alternative to chicken eggs for large-scale manufacturing of human and veterinary vaccines. According to Valneva, more than 20 different families of viruses have been shown to efficiently propagate in EB66® cells, while more than 60 human and veterinary EB66®-based vaccines are being developed using the technology in R&D and clinical phases.

The first human vaccine using EB66 was approved in 2014 in Japan, where the Chemo-Sero Therapeutic Research Institute (Kaketsuken), a codevelopment partner of GSK, was allowed to market a pandemic H5N1 influenza vaccine. That approval came two years after the first veterinary vaccine based on the cell line won marketing authorization.

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