Washington – The Government of President Joe Biden will announce on Tuesday that the pharmaceutical company Merck, Merck Sharp & Dohme outside the United States, will produce the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine as part of an agreement to accelerate the distribution of the immunization campaign, The Washington Post reported.
The White House promoted the deal to deal with delays from Johnson & Johnson, which recently said it would produce 20 million doses instead of the 25 million initially planned before the end of March.
Merck, which tried unsuccessfully to produce its own Covid-19 vaccine, will put two factories in the United States at the service of J&J vaccine production, one to fill the vials with the antigen and the other to produce the vaccine itself.
Government sources consulted by the newspaper assured that this collaboration is historical because “it recognizes that this is a wartime effort.”
The agreement uses a legal framework created for wartime and so that the Government can ensure productive capacity in times of crisis and will help Merck to have guaranteed access to the machinery and materials necessary to produce the vaccine.
Merck has a long history and experience in the production of vaccines, although its attempts at developing a vaccine against Covid-19 did not yield the expected results in clinical trials.
Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine received emergency clearance in the United States this weekend, making it the third vaccine to be distributed in the country, after those from Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna, which use the novel technology. of messenger RNA.
Unlike the other alternatives, the J&J vaccine uses a more traditional immunization technique, with genetic information transmitted in an adenovirus, so it can be stored at normal temperatures in any refrigerator.
In addition, it requires a single dose and not two vaccines, something that has complicated the logistics of the immunization program to date.
The J&J vaccine provides protection from the disease by ensuring that contracting the virus will not have serious effects or require hospitalization, so its arrival is viewed with hope in the fight against the pandemic.