Vir Biotechnology

Leyden Labs has raised $140 million in Series B financing, the intranasal therapeutic specialist announced Tuesday.

Leyden will use the funds to advance PanFlu, its preclinical monoclonal antibody influenza treatment candidate. Last week, the Netherlands-based company licensed PanFlu for mucosal administration from J&J’s Janssen, per a separate press release.

Former Vir executive Suha Jhaveri, who joined Leyden as chief commercial officer and head of business development in…

Vir Biotechnology announced last week that the Gates Foundation is giving the San Francisco-based biotech $10 million in grant funding and a $40 million equity investment to back the development of platform technologies that can produce broadly neutralizing antibodies to treat HIV and prevent malaria.

The new initiative will trial the “potential impact of broadly neutralizing antibodies engineered to inhibit viral replication and spread in people infected with HIV, as well as their…

Brii Biosciences, VBI Vaccines and Vir Biotechnology jointly announced on Wednesday that the first patient has been dosed in a Phase 2 combination trial of a potential functional cure for chronic hepatitis B infection.

The companies are studying BRII-835 (VIR-2218), an investigational small interfering ribonucleic acid (siRNA) targeting hepatitis B virus (HBV), in combination with BRII-179 (VBI-2601), an investigational HBV immunotherapeutic, for the treatment of chronic HBV…

The state of the hunt:

China will join the COVAX Facility, its foreign ministry announced Thursday.
  Regeneron requested U.S. FDA emergency authorization for a monoclonal antibody cocktail, and Eli Lilly planned a similar request for its mAb cocktail in November. 
  Remdesivir showed expanded benefits in final Phase 3 results published in the New England Journal of Medicine.



Phase 3 candidates:
The European Medicines Agency…

The state of the hunt:

Vaccine candidates from Novavax and J&J’s Janssen subsidiary entered Phase 3.
  Chinese regulators are reviewing inactivated vaccine candidates from CNBG for conditional authorization.
  Fujifilm’s flu drug Avigan (favipiravir) met its primary endpoint in a Phase 3 trial for treatment of Covid-19.



Phase 3 candidates:
China weighs approval of CNBG shots: State regulators are reviewing CNBG’s two…

The state of the hunt:

Moderna inked a $1.5 billion, 100-million-shot supply deal with the U.S. government for its mRNA vaccine candidate.
  The EU sealed a 400-million-dose vaccine deal with AstraZeneca and agreed to a framework with J&J for up to 400 million more.
  Biological E will produce the investigational vaccine from J&J’s Janssen subsidiary.



Clinical trials:

Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech took steps to modify the…

The state of the hunt: 

AstraZeneca inked a $1 billion deal Thursday with the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to develop and manufacture Oxford University’s recombinant adenovirus vaccine candidate. CanSino’s recombinant shot was found “tolerable and immunogenic” 28 days post-vaccination, according to a preliminary Phase 1 assessment published in The Lancet. Moderna announced positive interim Phase 1 data for its mRNA vaccine.


As the United States eclipsed China in confirmed cases, more vaccines neared human trials and funders made over $330 million in new commitments to fight Covid-19.

The week’s noteworthy developments included:


On vaccines, the University of Oxford announced today that it has begun recruiting volunteers for clinical trials—set to begin in weeks—of ChAdOx1 nCov-19, its adenovirus vector-based shot.

Sanofi announced today a collaboration with Massachusetts…