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COVID-19 related vaccines, therapies and biomanufacturing projects

From: Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada


In March 2020, the Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) was identified to deliver the Medical Countermeasures (MCM) initiative and was granted authority to invest $792M under the MCM stream to fund clinical trials and manufacturing capacity at scale to increase the chances of timely vaccines, treatments and improve Canada's long-term pandemic preparedness.

The first project, Abcellera Biologics, was announced within 19 days of the start of project negotiations. The speed at which this project was announced demonstrates SIF's commitment to confront the COVID-19 pandemic by mobilizing its resources to facilitate projects that would benefit Canadians.


The MCM stream is divided in three types of projects: vaccines, therapies and biomanufacturing projects. Under the MCM, to date SIF has:

Announced projects
Project name Province SIF Contribution Total Project Cost Announcement Date Project Type
Abcellera Biologics Inc. BC $175,631,000 $287,353,000 2020-05-03 Therapeutics and biomanufacturing
Variation Biotechnologies Inc. (VBI) ON $55,976,000 $74,636,000 2020-08-05 Vaccines
Precision NanoSystems Inc. BC $18,203,000 $24,271,000 2020-10-23 Vaccines
Medicago Inc. QC $173,000,000 $428,002,000 2020-10-23 Vaccines and biomanufacturing
Arch BioPartners ON $6,715,000 $8,953,000 2020-12-15 Therapeutics
Edesa Biotech Research, Inc. ON $14,053,000 $18,738,000 2021-02-02 Therapeutics
Precision NanoSystems Inc. BC $25,112,000 $50,224,000 2021-02-02 Biomanufacturing
KABS Laboratories Inc. QC $54,209,000 $84,843,000 2021-03-16 Biomanufacturing
Novocol Pharmaceutical of Canada ON $32,716,000 $72,632,000 2021-03-16 Biomanufacturing
Immune Biosolutions Inc. QC $13,442,000 $18,670,000 2021-03-16 Therapeutics
Resilience Biotechnologies Inc. ON $199,159,000 $401,518,000 2021-05-18 Biomanufacturing
Total $768,216,000 $1,469,840,000

Process for project selection

In April 2020, an open call for proposals was issued. Due to the complex scientific and technical nature of the proposals, after initial SIF assessment, the COVID-19 Vaccine Task force or the COVID-19 Therapeutics Task Force composed of leading scientific and industry experts provided advice on proposals.

Announced projects descriptions

Sanofi FLUZONE® High Dose Quadrivalent Influenza Vaccine

On March 31, 2021 the Government of Canada has announced an investment of up to $415 million to support in building an end-to-end influenza vaccine biomanufacturing facility in Toronto, Ontario. The facility will serve as their international production and distribution center of their high-dose seasonal influenza vaccine, FLUZONE® High Dose Quadrivalent Influenza Vaccine (FLUZONE® HD QIV). This demonstrates Canada's ability to attract foreign investments and to develop facilities with made-in-Canada solutions while focusing on both short-term strategic solutions and a long‑term vision in rebuilding Canada's biomanufacturing sector.

Announced projects
Project name Province SIF Contribution Total Project Cost Announcement Date Project Type
Sanofi Pasteur Limited ON $415,000,000 $925,226,000 2021-03-31 Biomanufacturing
Total $415,000,000 $925,226,000
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