Emergent BioSolutions Wins $29M Anthrax Vaccine Deal - Analyst Blog

Emergent BioSolutions ( EBS ) focuses on developing products primarily to counter emerging health threats. The major contributor to its top line is BioThrax-the sole vaccine to be cleared by the FDA for the pre-exposure prophylaxis of anthrax disease. Emergent BioSolutions is under contract to deliver up to 44.75 million doses of the vaccine to the U.S. Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) over a five-year period ending Sep 30, 2016. This contract with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is worth upto $1.25 billion.

Another Anthrax Vaccine in the Works, Thanks to NIH Funds

Emergent BioSolutions secured another U.S. contract, worth up to $29 million, earlier in the week for developing a dry formulation of the company's next generation anthrax vaccine candidate - NuThrax (AV7909, a combination of BioThrax and CPG 7909). Emergent BioSolutions was awarded the five-year contract by the National Institutes of Health's (NIH) National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

The federal contract will finance the manufacturing and non-clinical activities through the preparation of an investigational new drug application submission in the U.S. Emergent BioSolutions expects the dry version of NuThrax to be characterized by more friendly features enabling it to withstand warmer temperatures. The next generation vaccine will be easier to ship, doing away with the need for cold storage. We expect investor focus to remain on updates regarding the development of the new form of anthrax vaccine under the contract.

BioThrax Approval for New Indication to be sought by Year end

Emergent BioSolutions is looking to expand the label of BioThrax for post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) of anthrax arising from suspected or confirmed exposure to bacillus anthracis. The FDA granted orphan drug status to BioThrax in the PEP indication earlier this year (read more: Emergent's BioThrax Gets Orphan Drug Status ). The company expects to seek FDA approval for the additional indication by Dec 31, 2014.

Emergent BioSolutions carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Better-ranked stocks in the health care sector include Allergan ( AGN ), Gilead Sciences ( GILD ) and Mallinckrodt ( MNK ). All three stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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