EU signs deal with Bavarian Nordic for supply of 110,000 monkeypox vaccines

FILE PHOTO: Illustration shows test tubes labelled "Monkeypox virus positive and negative\

BRUSSELS (Reuters) -The European Union signed on Tuesday an agreement with Bavarian Nordic for the supply of about 110,000 doses of vaccines against monkeypox, the EU Commission and the company said.

The vaccines will be bought with EU funds and delivered to EU states, EU health commissioner Stella Kyriakides said. Doses are to be delivered in proportion to the population, starting with states with the most urgent needs.

Deliveries will start immediately and will be completed in the coming months, the company said. It raised its outlook for this year's financial results after the deal with the EU and other smaller deals for the supply of its vaccine.

About 900 cases of monkeypox have been reported in 19 EU countries and also in Norway and Iceland, which will be entitled to receive doses despite not being EU members, the Commission said.

Danish biotech Bavarian Nordic's vaccine, known as Imvanex in Europe and Jynneos in the United States, has been approved against smallpox.

The vaccine is not authorised yet in the EU against monkeypox, the EU Commission said.

"However, the smallpox vaccine also protects people from monkeypox, since this virus is closely related to the smallpox virus," the Commission said.

The EU drugs regulator is currently in talks with Bavarian Nordic for a speedy approval of the vaccine also against monkeypox, the Commission said.

Some EU states, including Germany and Spain, have already made their own orders for monkeypox vaccines.

(Reporting by Francesco Guarascio @fraguarascio, Anna Ringstrom and Bart Meijer; Editing by Ed Osmond, Kirsten Donovan)