The United States Department of Health and Human Services has offered a contract to Novamax, Inc. for development of vaccines for the flu virus.
The contract is valued near $180 million, and Novamax is to develop and manufacture vaccines that can effectively prevent influenza both seasonally and in the cases of a pandemic.
This contract helped Novamax shares jump nearly 20 percent.
Recent information suggested that virus-like particle vaccines (VLP), those used by Novamax, may be produced more quickly than other vaccines, and also may be more effective at prevention of the flu.
The contract included nearly $100 million for 3 years, with an option of just over $80 million for the following 2 years.
Development of the existing vaccines using the VLP method will continue during the 3 year contract period, Novamax explains.
For testing of the vaccines, the company plans to conduct three different clinical trials.
Additional plans include building a new facility that can produce upwards of 50 million doses of vaccine in as little as 12 weeks during a pandemic.