J&J signs manufacturing deal with GRAM for potential COVID-19 vaccine

FILE PHOTO: The company logo for Johnson & Johnson is displayed to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the company's listing at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., September 17, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

(Reuters) - Johnson & Johnson has signed a manufacturing deal for its coronavirus vaccine candidate with Grand River Aseptic Manufacturing Inc, the contract manufacturing organization said on Friday.

Michigan-based GRAM will manufacture the healthcare conglomerate’s SARS-CoV-2 vaccine candidate, which is being developed with part funding from the U.S. government, and provide finished vials.

Earlier in the week, J&J launched a late-stage trial of its experimental single-shot COVID-19 vaccine and said its expects results of the trial by year end or early next year.

J&J, which is readying its supply chain to start distribution as soon as it gets FDA’s approval, expects to manufacture as many as 1 billion doses in 2021.

Reporting By Mrinalika Roy in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli