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Vaccine plant passes biosecurity checks

By Wang Xiaoyu | | Updated: 2020-08-06 17:25
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A staff member takes out samples of the COVID-19 inactivated vaccine at a vaccine production plant of Sinopharm in Beijing, on April 11, 2020. [Photo/Xinhua]

A new manufacturing plant for novel coronavirus vaccines recently passed biosecurity checks and is ready to begin production, the China National Biotech Group said on Wednesday.

Led by the Beijing Institute of Biological Products affiliated to CNBG, construction of the plant in Beijing was completed on April 15. The plant has the capacity to manufacture up to 120 million doses annually.

In mid-July, inspectors conducted a comprehensive assessment of the plant's biosafety measures and concluded that the new facility had met national and international standards. It was granted a green light by relevant government departments for mass production of vaccines, according to an article released by CNBG on its WeChat account.

"The new factory in Beijing is the world's first and largest manufacturing plant devoted to novel coronavirus vaccines," it said. "During the construction, we have upheld the safety-first principle and abided by domestic biosafety rules and standards as well as requirements of the World Health Organization."

On July 1, the Wuhan Institute of Biological Products, another research institute under CNBG located in Wuhan, Hubei province, completed construction of a new facility that houses both research and manufacturing units for vaccines. The institute is now racing to gain approval for production of coronavirus vaccines.

The combined manufacturing capacity of the two plants will be 220 million doses per year, according to the article.

The CNBG said the completion of the plants not only increased vaccine-production infrastructure, but also played a role in helping authorities formulate biosafety standards and regulations.

The CNBG is also pushing for the development of an inactivated COVID-19 vaccine. Results from the first and second stages of human trial show that the vaccine is safe and effective, triggering strong antibody responses in participants.

Inactivated vaccines use viruses, bacteria or other pathogens that have lost disease-producing capacity to stimulate the immune system to develop an immune response.

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