Member Company Efforts to Combat Coronavirus Outbreak

As of March 24, 2020

Below is a snapshot of on-going PhRMA member company efforts to support the detection, prevention and treatment of the coronavirus outbreak. The below only represents a portion of the more than 50% of PhRMA’s members who are engaged in this effort.

Jump Nav

AbbVie

The company is collaborating with select health authorities and institutions globally to determine antiviral activity as well as efficacy and safety of lopinavir/ritonavir against COVID-19. AbbVie is supporting clinical studies and basic research with lopinavir/ritonavir, working closely with European health authorities and the FDA, CDC, NIH and BARDA to coordinate on these efforts. Along with industry partners, the company has joined the Innovative Medicines Initiative to support research and discovery of targeted medicines against COVID-19. The company previously donated approximately $2 million (USD) of Aluvia as an experimental option to help address the growing health crisis. AbbVie is also working with the WHO to ensure a coordinated global effort.

-

-

AstraZeneca

Through its scientific expertise in infectious disease and proprietary antibody discovery technology, AstraZeneca has rapidly mobilized its research efforts to discovering novel coronavirus-neutralising antibodies as a treatment to prevent COVID-19 disease. The company is currently tailoring its Pandemic Prevention Platform (P3) program, funded in part by the U.S. government, to address the 2019-nCoV outbreak and AstraZeneca’s teams are now focused on identifying monoclonal antibodies to progress into clinical trial evaluation. AstraZeneca is also donating nine million face masks to support health care workers around the world as they respond to the COVID-19 global pandemic. The company has partnered with the World Economic Forum’s COVID Action Platform, created with the support of the World Health Organization, to identify countries in greatest need. Italy will receive the first shipments the week of March 23, with other countries to follow. In addition to these donations, AstraZeneca is accelerating the development of its diagnostic testing capabilities to scale-up screening and is also working in partnership with governments on existing screening programs to supplement testing. To help ensure the continued supply of its medicines to patients, AstraZeneca will screen employees across its manufacturing and supply network. The company’s research and development teams have also been working expeditiously to identify monoclonal antibodies to progress towards clinical trial evaluation as a treatment to prevent COVID-19. More than 50 virology, immunology, respiratory and protein engineering experts across research, clinical, regulatory and manufacturing are placing the highest priority on developing a treatment to minimize the global impact of the disease.

-

Bayer

Bayer has made substantial financial donations as well as donations of several medicines including an antibiotic to support those affected by the outbreak of COVID-19 in China. The donations have been made to the Chinese Red Cross, which is working with Chinese health authorities to coordinate the deployment of aid measures.

-

Biogen

The Biogen Foundation has committed $10 million to support global response efforts and communities around the world impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds will be used to address immediate critical needs, with the majority of donations going to support non-profit organizations in the U.S., including Massachusetts and North Carolina, in Italy and in other impacted countries worldwide. This donation will be used to help expand testing options, ease the strain on medical systems, provide training for front line health workers and support access to necessities like food. This adds to the donation made by Biogen China to the Red Cross Society of China. The company has also provided medical equipment and supplies to Partners HealthCare in Massachusetts, to help diagnose COVID-19 in a greater number of people. Partners HealthCare is one of the largest providers of healthcare services in the Boston area. Biogen will also be supporting Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital directly as they work on the front line to treat and contain the virus.

-

Boehringer Ingelheim

Boehringer Ingelheim (BI) is standing together with all parties to support the fight against the epidemic, making every effort to protect employees’ health and safety. BI has made a number of donations totaling more than $1 million (USD) to support the forefront fight against the epidemic in China including: A donation to the China Red Cross Foundation to purchase medical protective materials for hospitals in Wuhan and other cities in Hubei. This helps local frontline medical staff involved in their fight against the epidemic to treat patients more safely. The headquarters of BI also purchased 100,000 protective masks from Germany, which are donated to provide protection for medical staff in hospitals where the patients with the new pneumonia are treated. BI has also donated medicines to help treat patients with new pneumonia in Wuhan.

-

Eli Lilly and Company

Lilly is committed to doing everything possible to bring the full force of their scientific and medical expertise to attack the coronavirus pandemic. The company announced it has entered into an agreement with AbCellera to co-develop antibodies for the potential treatment and prevention of COVID-19, the disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus. The collaboration will leverage AbCellera's rapid pandemic response platform, developed under the DARPA Pandemic Prevention Platform (P3) Program, and Lilly's global capabilities for rapid development, manufacturing and distribution of therapeutic antibodies.

Additionally, Lilly scientists are partnering with the Indiana State Department of Health, with support from the FDA, to accelerate testing in Indiana for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Lilly is using its specialized research laboratories to analyze samples taken in Indiana health care facilities, including nursing homes and emergency rooms. In addition, Lilly has launched a drive-through testing facility at their corporate headquarters for active front-line health care workers and Indianapolis first responders, as a service to the community and in an effort to protect people working on the front lines of this epidemic. On April 1, Lilly announced it is expanding testing to two new groups of higher-risk individuals: workers in businesses deemed essential by the State of Indiana who have regular public contact as part of their job, and people in the community showing symptoms who are vulnerable to severe complications of the virus. Lilly hopes that expanding testing in these populations will make a meaningful difference in this fight – for both individuals and health care providers as they battle this virus on the front lines. Lilly will not accept payment from government agencies, hospitals, insurance companies or patients for conducting or analyzing tests.

Lilly is also closely monitoring their supply chain and does not currently anticipate shortages for any of their medicines, including all forms of insulin. Additionally, Lilly and the Lilly Foundation are actively engaged with community partners to address new and complex challenges arising from the coronavirus, including the economic impact on vulnerable people. Find the latest information on Lilly’s efforts here.

New $35 co-pay now available through Lilly Insulin Value Program in response to COVID-19 crisis in U.S. Learn more here.

-

Genentech, a member of the Roche Group

Roche and Genentech are providing scientific expertise and advice to the WHO and other relevant stakeholders given infectious disease is a key R&D focus area for them. The company is working with Chinese health authorities and the government to help provide screening and health care, including supporting local health officials and hospitals in the Hubei Province. They recently donated diagnostic tests, medical supplies and financial support for the affected region.

-

Gilead Sciences

Gilead is committed to collaborating with global health organizations to support pandemic responses. The company is working with government and non-government organizations and regulatory authorities to develop a strategy to provide its investigational compound, remdesivir, to patients with COVID-19 for emergency treatment in the absence of any approved treatment options, and to support clinical trials to determine whether it can safely and effectively be used to treat COVID-19. Together with health authorities in China, Gilead has initiated two clinical trials in patients who have been infected with COVID-19 to determine the safety and efficacy of remdesivir as a potential treatment for the coronavirus. Both trials are now enrolling participants. The company is also working with regulatory authorities to provide remdesivir to physicians for compassionate use to treat a small number of severely ill patients with confirmed COVID-19 infection and severe clinical symptoms. In anticipation of potential future needs, Gilead has accelerated manufacturing timelines to increase its available supply of remdesivir as rapidly as possible. This is being done before knowing whether remdesivir will be determined to be safe and effective to treat patients with COVID-19.

-

GlaxoSmithKline

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic and is supporting global efforts to tackle the virus. Since the outbreak, GSK has been actively exploring ways to help, with science and expertise, alongside protecting the health and wellbeing of its people and managing the company's global supply chains to support patients and consumers who depend on GSK products.

GSK is taking the following actions to support the global response to COVID-19:

  • Donating $10 million to WHO and the UN Foundation's COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund to support WHO and partners prevent, detect and manage the pandemic, particularly where the needs are the greatest.
  • Expansion of vaccines collaborations—GSK is now working with five partner companies and research groups across the world, including in the USA and China. This builds on previous announcements regarding partnerships with the University of Queensland and Clover Biopharmaceuticals to make our vaccine adjuvant technology available to support their respective COVID-19 vaccine research programs. The use of an adjuvant is of particular importance in a pandemic situation since it may reduce the amount of vaccine protein required per dose, allowing more vaccine doses to be produced, and therefore contributing to the protection of more people.
  • GSK is entering a new collaborative research effort, the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, by making available compounds from its libraries for screening, with the aim of bringing forward the most promising molecules that could be used to treat cases of COVID-19.
  • Evaluating its marketed medicines and those in development, to determine if any could be used beyond their current indications, and evaluating options to make available specialized laboratory space to help in research and testing of COVID-19.
  • GSK is also donating surplus reagents to countries to support diagnostic testing, preparing to do the same for surplus personal protective equipment (PPE) and have initiated new volunteering processes for employees, to enable those with medical or specialist expertise to provide support to frontline health workers and national governments.

GSK continues to monitor the situation closely, and take actions to develop our response to the pandemic. In doing so, we will continue to put the needs of patients and our people first at all times.

-

Johnson & Johnson

Johnson & Johnson (J&J) is seeking to further expedite its investigational coronavirus vaccine program through an expanded collaboration with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR) at the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. Additionally, J&J initiated a review of known pathways in coronavirus pathophysiology to determine whether previously tested medicines can be used to help patients survive a COVID-19 infection and reduce the severity of disease in non-lethal cases. Johnson & Johnson has also announced that its Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies have entered a collaboration with the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) to support the development of a preventive vaccine candidate for COVID-19. The parties have commenced preclinical testing of multiple vaccine prospects, with the aim to identify by the end of the month a COVID-19 vaccine candidate for clinical trials.

-

Merck

The company has provided a half a million (500,000) personal protective masks to New York City for use as part of urgent efforts to address the outbreak in New York. The company has also donated 300,000 masks for New Jersey. Additionally, through Merck for Mothers, the company’s global initiative to help end preventable maternal deaths, the company will provide $3 million to help health systems better meet the needs of pregnant women before, during and following delivery while tackling COVID-19. Merck for Mothers will direct investments to efforts in the U.S. and globally in countries impacted by COVID-19 to help address maternal health challenges that are arising as a result of the pandemic.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Merck remains focused on protecting the safety of its employees and their families, assuring that our supply of medicines and vaccines reach our patients, contributing its scientific expertise to the development of antiviral approaches, and supporting its healthcare providers and the communities in which they serve.

Learn more about Merck’s efforts here.

-

Novartis

Novartis has announced a broad range of initiatives to respond to COVID-19 Pandemic. Efforts include the creation of a $20 million global fund to support impacted communities and entering into new collaborative research efforts such as the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, coordinated by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard, as well as a COVID-19 directed partnership organized by the Innovative Medicines Initiative. The company has also made available a set of compounds from its libraries that it considers suitable for in vitro antiviral testing and is evaluating its existing products to see if any could be repurposed beyond their approved indications.

-

Pfizer

The company has recently completed a preliminary assessment of certain antiviral compounds  that were previously in development and that inhibited the replication of coronaviruses similar to the one causing COVID-19 in cultured cells. Pfizer is engaging with a third party to screen these compounds under an accelerated timeline and currently expects to have the results back by the end of March. Upon completion of such screening, the company could be in a position to move forward with development depending on the results. Toxicology studies would then need to be completed prior to any clinical development, but if successful, Pfizer hopes to be in the clinic by no later than the end of 2020. Additionally, Pfizer and BioNTech announced that the companies have agreed to a letter of intent regarding the co-development and distribution (excluding China) of a potential mRNA-based coronavirus vaccine aimed at preventing COVID-19 infection. The companies have executed a Material Transfer and Collaboration Agreement to enable the parties to immediately start working together. The collaboration aims to accelerate development of BioNTech’s potential first-in-class COVID-19 mRNA vaccine program, BNT162, which is expected to enter clinical testing by the end of April 2020. The rapid advancement of this collaboration builds on the research and development collaboration into which Pfizer and BioNTech entered in 2018 to develop mRNA-based vaccines for prevention of influenza.

-

Sanofi

Sanofi Pasteur, the vaccines global business unit of Sanofi, will leverage previous development work for a SARS vaccine which may unlock a fast path forward for developing a COVID-19 vaccine. Sanofi is collaborating with BARDA, expanding the company’s long-standing partnership with the Authority. Sanofi will use its recombinant DNA platform to produce a 2019 novel coronavirus vaccine candidate. The recombinant technology produces an exact genetic match to proteins found on the surface of the virus. The DNA sequence encoding this antigen will be combined into the DNA of the baculovirus expression platform, the basis of Sanofi’s licensed recombinant influenza product, and used to rapidly produce large quantities of the coronavirus antigen which will be formulated to stimulate the immune system to protect against the virus.

-

Takeda

Takeda is developing of an anti-SARS-CoV-2 polyclonal hyperimmune globulin (H-IG) with the potential to treat high-risk individuals with COVID-19, which is being referred to as TAK-888.  Hyperimmune globulins are plasma derived-therapies that have previously been shown to be effective in the treatment of severe acute viral respiratory infections.  Takeda is currently in discussions with multiple national health and regulatory agencies and health care partners in the US, Asia and Europe to expeditiously move the research into TAK-888 forward. In addition, Takeda is exploring whether select marketed therapies and molecules in its drug library could be viable candidates for the effective treatment of COVID-19. These efforts are at an early stage but being given a high priority within the company.

-

Teva Pharmaceutical

Teva is donating critical medicines, which are being studied in clinical trials to assess benefit against COVID-19 globally, including more than 10 million doses of hydroxychloroquine sulfate tablets through wholesalers to hospitals across the U.S. This includes tablets being used in critical research efforts. TEVA’s global manufacturing network continues to increase production of both active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) and finished product to ensure these medicines will get to patients globally, wherever and whenever they are needed.