Canada orders additional smallpox vaccines from Bavarian Nordic

Bavarian Nordic, a vaccine-focused biotechnology company, announced on Wednesday that the Canadian government ordered 20,000 additional doses of IMVAMUNE smallpox vaccine to replace its current stockpile.

The order from the Canadian government is through the exercising of an option under an ongoing contract. The vaccines will replace the stockpile that was delivered in 2009.

Bavarian Nordic began its collaboration with Canada in 2008 to address requirements for biological preparedness. The company initially received a contract to supply 20,000 doses of the smallpox vaccine to the Canadian armed forces.

The contract also contained built-in funding milestones for the filing of a new drug substance application for IMVAMUNE for use in the general population. The application was filed in 2011 and is now under review by Health Canada. A decision on the application is expected during the first half of 2013.

"With this order, the Canadian authorities have demonstrated their long-term commitment to secure IMVAMUNE as part of their biological preparedness in case of an emergency," Anders Hedegaard, the president and CEO of Bavarian Nordic, said. "The anticipated marketing approval of IMVAMUNE in Canada next year will expand the business opportunity and could represent this first product license for Bavarian Nordic in any country."

IMVAMUNE is a non-replicating smallpox vaccine candidate that is being developed and supplied for emergency use to the Strategic National Stockpile of the United States as part of a contract with the U.S.