South Korea-based GC Biopharma has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Eubiologics to establish a collaborative effort for the co-production of Euvichol, an oral cholera vaccine.

Under the terms of the MOU, both parties have agreed to collaborate to ensure the successful supply of the vaccine.

Eubiologics, a company specialising in the development and production of Euvichol, will oversee the bulk vaccine production. On the other hand, GC Biopharma will be responsible for the packaging process, including vial bottling.

Beginning in the first half of 2024, the two companies will work together to manufacture the vaccine.

The production is intended to meet the demand from UNICEF, as the organization has requested an additional supply of the vaccine due to an increased prevalence of cholera infection in various regions, particularly Africa.

Euvichol is an oral vaccine that was jointly developed by Eubiologics and the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) for the prevention of cholera – a disease primarily affecting developing countries.

The vaccine obtained WHO Prequalification in 2015 and has been supplied to UNICEF since 2016. By 2022, the cumulative supply of the vaccine has exceeded 100 million doses. Eubiologics is currently the sole supplier of cholera vaccines administered by UNICEF.

Eubiologics vice president Kyeong-Ho Min said: “With the more frequent floods and droughts due to climate change and global warming, the world is currently experiencing rapid spread of cholera, leading to a shortage of vaccine supply.”

He added: “The MOU will be a big boost to the increase of vaccine supply, and it will bring us not only more revenue, but also a way to further contribute to controlling the spread of cholera.”

GC Biopharma global business division head Woo Jin Lee said: “Both companies will extend their utmost efforts for the increase of cholera vaccine supply based on their unique strengths” and added that “we will continue to explore more collaboration with other parties to contribute to the better public health of the world.”