Providence Therapeutics wins big with funding from NGen to bolster drug manufacturing
The NGen funds will be used to expand operations in Calgary to design and manufacture COVID-19 vaccines and build a pipeline of mRNA therapeutics.
CALGARY and TORONTO — Jan. 21’s announcement by Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen), that Providence Therapeutics has been named as one of eight companies receiving funding to advance its COVID-19 vaccine research and support its manufacturing capacity.
Providence Therapeutics, with offices in Calgary, AB and Toronto, ON, is developing a made-in-Canada COVID-19 mRNA vaccine, PTX-COVID19-B, and will be running its early phase clinical trials in Canada starting in January 2021.
It is partnering with Calgary-based Northern RNA Inc. to establish mRNA vaccine manufacturing capacity within Canada and build a raw material supply chain that will be essential to produce the tens of millions of doses required in Canada to meet current needs and those of any future outbreaks. Pending successful clinical trials and Health Canada approval, a successful COVID-19 vaccine will be in extremely high demand globally. The NGen funds will be used to expand operations in Calgary to design and manufacture COVID-19 vaccines and build a pipeline of mRNA therapeutics.
Brad Sorenson, CEO of Providence Therapeutics, welcomed the announcement:
“We are extremely grateful to NGen for their support. We are already seeing supply issues with COVID-19 vaccines that entered Canada in the past month. Today’s announcement confirms that it is critical that we have a vaccine that is made in Canada and ensures Canadians have reliable access moving forward. This has been our mission at Providence from day one. Today’s funding will help get us closer to developing a critical life-saving vaccine for Canadians and potentially others around the world.”
NGen is the industry-led organization behind Canada’s Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster. The funding, which is part of NGen’s Strategic Supply Challenge, was announced on Jan. 21 by Ali Ehsassi, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry. The program allocates almost $20 million to a total of eight first-round winners who are developing advanced manufacturing projects to support Canada’s COVID efforts. The combined investment for the projects will total over $41.5 million.