Merck & Co Inc (NYSE: MRK) has signed a licensing agreement with the United Nations-backed Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) to allow more companies to manufacture generic versions of its experimental oral antiviral COVID-19 treatment.
Merck said the royalty-free license would apply to 105 low- and middle-income countries.
It allows manufacturers selected by MPP to make generic versions of molnupiravir, an antiviral pill Merck has developed with Ridgeback Biotherapeutics.
Related Link: WHO-Led Program Intends To Purchase Oral COVID-19 Antivirals For , Including Merck's: Reuters.
"This is the first transparent, public health-driven voluntary license for a COVID-19 medical technology," Merck and MPP said in a joint statement.
Merck, Ridgeback Biotherapeutics, and Emory University will not receive sales royalties for molnupiravir under this agreement for as long as COVID-19 remains classified as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern by the World Health Organization.
Related Link: Merck, Ridgeback File For Emergency Use Nod For COVID-19 Antiviral.
Price Action: MRK shares up 0.18% at $82.40 during the premarket session on the last check Wednesday.
Click here for options trades from Benzinga
Bristol Myers Pledges To Offload Acceleron Shares: Bloomberg
PDS Biotech Pauses Recruitment In PDS0101 Combo Cancer Trial
© 2021 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.