U.S. government signs deal to make more COVID-19 vaccine components

(Reuters) – The U.S. government has entered an agreement with life sciences company Cytiva, a unit of Danaher Corp, to expand the manufacturing of products needed to make COVID-19 vaccines, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) said on Tuesday.

Under the deal, Cytiva will receive about $31 million to scale up manufacturing of vaccine-related products, including cell cultures and hardware such as bioreactors used for the culturing of cells and antibodies.

The grant will help the company ramp up the manufacturing capabilities of its Massachusetts and Utah facilities.

The U.S. government has till date agreed to pay more than $1.1 billion to purchase needles, syringes, vials and supply kits, as well as expand manufacturing capacity for COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics in the United States, the HHS said.

“By expanding capacity now, not only do we help deliver these products as quickly as possible, but we also return manufacturing to America, boosting the economy and preparing us for future crises,” HHS Secretary Alex Azar said in a media statement.

Cytiva is among the primary suppliers to several companies currently working with the U.S. government to develop COVID-19 vaccines.

(Reporting By Mrinalika Roy and Vishwadha Chander in Bengaluru; Editing by Devika Syamnath)

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