US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded a contract to SIGA Technologies for 1.7 million courses of smallpox antivirals to combat bio-warfare pathogens.
These will be stored under the Strategic National Stockpile initiative.
This contract with SIGA, a leading developer of pharmaceutical agents to fight potential bio-warfare pathogens, is initially valued $500 million. However if all options are exercised the contract is expected to generate $2.8 billion.
The contract is based on SIGA Technologies supplying HHS with the smallpox anti viral ST-246 drug.
The award of the contract with HHS comes shortly after the $12.7 million four year development contract with the US Department of Defense’s Transformational Medical Technologies Initiative (TMTI) to support the preclinical development of ST-669.
ST-669 a broad spectrum antiviral that has antiviral activity against several different viral families which have been classified as "Category A" and "Category B" by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which can generate high morbidity and mortality.
The award of these contracts demonstrates that a small business can become a highly valued resource for an institution as great as the US Government Department of Defense by focussing on key strengths and in-house expertise, in the case of SIGA, the development of antiviral programs to combat "Category A" and "Category B" pathogens.