Chinese Biotech Zhifei Got Exclusive Rights From Merk on HPV Vaccine


Chongqing Zhifei Biological Products Co., Ltd. (stock code: 300122) announced that it has signed an HPV vaccine-related agreement with Merck HK, a related company of Merck Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. further adjusted and determined the royalty of HPV vaccine (cervical cancer vaccine) that Zhifei Biotechnology should pay for being the agency of vaccine commercialization in China. The comprehensive basic purchase amount of four- and nine-valent HPV vaccines are 5,507 million yuan in 2019, 8.33 billion yuan in 2020, and 4.165 billion yuan in 2021, totalized as 18.02 billion yuan. This means that starting from 2019, Merck’s four- and nine-valent HPV vaccines will increase supply to the Chinese mainland.

It is understood that Zhifei Bio and Merck have started marketing cooperation since April 2011. The former is responsible for the sales of Merck’s vaccine products in the mainland China region. In September 2012, Zhifei Biotech signed an agreement with Merck on the four-price HPV vaccine. After obtaining the marketing license in mainland China, Merk will exclusively supply the agreed products to Zhifei Bio and grant it exclusive promotion rights in mainland China. However, Gardasil 4 was not officially approved for sale in China until May 2017; the nine-valent vaccine Gardasil 9 got conditionally approved by CFDA 9 days after Merck submitted its listing application. In June this year, mainland tourists who came to Hong Kong to inoculate vaccine resulted in a shortage of vaccines, and the delay in listing approval undoubtedly increased the demand for vaccines.

It is reported that cervical cancer is a disease caused by persistent infection of the female genital tract by high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV). Among the female reproductive system malignancies in China, the incidence and mortality rate of cervical cancer ranks first, with about 100,000 new cases each year and about 30,000 deaths. More than 90% of cervical cancers are associated with HPV, which makes cervical cancer the only cancer with a clear and preventable cause.

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