June 30, 2009 / 5:34 PM / 10 years ago

Rovi to use Novavax technology for flu virus

MADRID, June 30 (Reuters) - Spanish pharmaceutical company (ROVI.MC) has reached an agreement with Novavax Inc. (NVAX.O) to use the U.S. company’s technology to produce pandemic and seasonal flu vaccines, Rovi said on Tuesday.

Novavax’s “Virus Like Particle (VLP)” technology is currently in clinical trials, Rovi said in a statement after signing an agreement with the Spanish government and the local authorities to build a vaccine manufacturing plant in Granada, Andalucia.

The Granada plant is due to come on stream in 2012.

Novavax, a development-stage company with no marketed products, is in midstage testing in the United States of a vaccine against the H1N1 virus.

Rovi will have exclusive licences to sell the vaccines in Spain and Portugal, plus non-exclusive licences in Europe, Latina America and Africa.

In addition to the licensing agreement, Rovi will make a $3 million equity investment in Novavax and will provide additional development funding if needed.

Shares in Novavax rose 38 percent to 3.45 usd on the Nasdaq .IXIC at 1710 GMT.

Reporting by Jose Elias Rodriguez; writing by Judy MacInnes; Editing by David Cowell

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