Pharmaceuticals Pfizer and BioNTech announced, this Thursday (25/8), the signing of a letter of intent with the Brazilian laboratory Eurofarma for the production of vaccines against Covid-19.
According to the company, the objective is to manufacture immunizations for distribution throughout Latin America. Headquartered in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Eurofarma will be responsible for the manufacturing activities within the chain and the supply of the immunizing agent ComiRNAty.
The organizations have not yet informed in which Eurofarma headquarters will take place the manufacture of the drugs. The project is part of Pfizer’s extension around the globe: the company hopes to build another 20 laboratories in several countries, on four continents.
According to Pfizer, “technical transfer activities, on-site development and equipment installation will begin immediately” with Eurofarma.
The Brazilian company will receive raw material from the United States and the manufacture of ready-made doses will begin in 2022. The expectation is that annual production will reach 100 million doses, which will be distributed exclusively in Latin America.
“Our new collaboration with Eurofarma expands our global supply chain network — helping us to continue to provide fair and equitable access to our vaccine,” said Albert Bourla, president and CEO of Pfizer, in a statement.
Currently, Brazil has its own manufacture of two vaccines against Covid. Coronavac, from the Butantan Institute, in São Paulo, and AstraZeneca, produced at the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Fiocruz), in Rio de Janeiro.
Incorporation into SUS
The partnership with the Brazilian laboratory points to the use of the Pfizer vaccine against Covid-19 in an eventual annual immunization campaign against the coronavirus.
This is because the drug is one of the only ones with definitive registration approved by the National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa). In addition, Pfizer’s vaccine is one of those approved by the National Commission for the Inclusion of Technology in the SUS (Conitec) for incorporation into the Unified Health System (SUS).
In practice, the measure includes immunizing the SUS list of medicines, as well as other vaccines that are already part of the system, such as the flu, for example. AstraZeneca’s Covid vaccine has also been incorporated into the system.
“We are making available our best resources in industrial capacity, technology and quality for this project, so that we can fulfill the contract with excellence and contribute to the supply of the Latin American market”, said Maurizio Billi, President of Eurofarma.
Currently, Brazil has two contracts signed with Pfizer/BioNTech. The first of them, closed in March, is in effect and provides for the delivery of 100 million doses. Of this amount, 1 million arrived in the country in April and another 2.5 million in May.
The second contract, signed in May this year, also provides for 100 million doses. However, vaccines should only reach the country in the last quarter of the year.