AstraZeneca comments on withdrawn COVID-19 vaccine

Published: 10-May-2024

The manufacturer of the COVID-19 has commented on the withdrawal of its vaccine from the market

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AstraZeneca has announced that it is withdrawing its COVID-19 vaccine, Vaxzevria, from the market.

“We are incredibly proud of the role Vaxzevria played in ending the global pandemic," a spokesperson from AstraZeneca said.

The spokesperson explained that according to independent estimates, over 6.5 million lives were saved in the first year of use alone and over three billion doses were supplied globally. 

The reason stated for the retraction is that there is a surplus of vaccines in circulation.

"As multiple, variant COVID-19 vaccines have since been developed there is a surplus of available updated vaccines,' said the spokesperson. "This has led to a decline in demand for Vaxzervria, which is no longer being manufactured or supplied. AstraZeneca has therefore taken the decision to initiate withdrawal of the Marketing Authorisations for Vaxzevria within Europe."

So what happens to the production environments?

Cleanroom Technology reached out to AstraZeneca for comment on what has happened to the manufacturing facilities that used to produce the vaccine.

"We have not been producing the vaccine since early 2023," AstraZeneca told Cleanroom Technology.

"We partnered with many external manufacturing partners to make the vaccine so it could be supplied across the world," the spokesperson said.

Using external manufacturing partners means that AstraZeneca didn't need to build the facilities from scratch itself.

CDMOs (Contract Development and Manufacturing Organisation) are a common asset in the pharmaceutical industry to manufacture, among other things, over capacity batches of essential medicines.

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