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Vivian Xie
6 Mar 2023

Oxfordshire vaccine manufacturing site part of 10-year agreement between Moderna and UK government

In an effort to protect against potential future global health emergencies, the government of the UK and Moderna have cemented a 10-year partnership for vaccine manufacturing and research.

Pharmaceutical and biotech giant Moderna has struck a deal with the government of the UK that aims to bring a state-of-the-art vaccine manufacturing site to Harwell, Oxfordshire, among other partnership agreements.

The partnership will allow the establishment of a new Innovation and Technology Centre as part of a Harwell science campus, creating over 150 highly skilled jobs and increasing the UKs manufacturing capacity of up to 250 million vaccines per year for respiratory diseases such as flu, respiratory syncytial virus, and COVID-19. In a bid to protect the patients in the UK against potential future global health threats, NHS patients will also gain access to Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine against several strains of the virus through rapid access to the latest developments in vaccine technology. 

Chief Executive of the UK Health Security Agency Dr. Jenny Harries has commented that her department’s COVID Vaccine Unit has “played such a major role in bringing this exciting partnership with Modern to fruition. UKHSA will now be taking this forward as a vital part of our preparedness against future respiratory virus threats, including COVID-19.” She added, “Our scientists have been monitoring the evolution of the virus throughout the pandemic and assuring continued protection for the population. This partnership will take the winning ways of working with industry and build the nation’s resilience, giving us rapid access to vaccines. We look forward to working closely with Moderna and playing a key role in supporting the government’s ambitious life sciences strategy.” 

The opportunity to develop vaccines within the UK has been credited with rapidly scaling production in the event of a health emergency and bolstering the nation’s potential responses to future pandemics. The UK was the first nation to administer a vaccine for COVID-19 outside of a clinical trial, a milestone the government hopes to continue with the construction of the vaccine manufacturing site: “It is vital we invest in fighting future variants of [COVID-19] as well as other deadly viruses that are circulating, such as seasonal flu and RSV, and this partnership with Moderna will also strengthen our ability to respond to any future pandemics. By boosting our onshore vaccine manufacturing capability, we are a step closer to becoming the leading global hub for life sciences,” stated Steve Barclay, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care. 

Over a 10-year period, Moderna will work with the COVID Vaccine Unit, a part of the UKHSA, to invest in UK-based R&D activities such as running substantially more clinical trials in the UK and offering grant funding for those in PhD and research programmes at UK universities. Kicking off the success of mRNA technology adoption with the COVID-19 vaccine, the new Innovation and Technology Centre will allow for the development of similar revolutionary treatments in the UK, to the benefit of NHS patients and across the world. Since the agreement’s announcement in June 2022, construction is slated to commence early this year and by 2025, the first mRNA vaccine is expected to be produced in the UK. 

Source: UK cements 10-year-partnership with Moderna in major boost for vaccines and research - GOV.UK ( 

Vivian Xie
Editor - Custom Content

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