The U.S. will buy $26 million worth of SIGA Technologies Inc.’s IV version of the antiviral drug TPOXX to help with the monkeypox outbreak across the country, the company announced Tuesday.
SIGA, a drug company, will deliver the product in 2023. The IV version is an “important option” for patients who can’t swallow the pill, the company said, particularly since monkeypox can cause rashes and blisters in the mouth.
The contract, as well as the funding of a study of IV TPOXX, “highlight the growing importance of a broad-based response to the substantial risks posed by the orthopox family of viruses, including smallpox and monkeypox,” Phil Gomez, PhD, the CEO of SIGA, said in the statement.
“We will continue to coordinate with the U.S. government toward future procurements of oral TPOXX and IV TPOXX,” he said.
The oral and IV versions of TPOXX are approved by the FDA for the treatment of smallpox, though they aren’t yet approved for monkeypox, according to Reuters. But the CDC has provided guidance for use under “expanded access” as an experimental drug.
SIGA has also received multiple orders for the oral drug from Canada, as well as countries in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region, Reuters reported.
Nearly 32,000 monkeypox cases have been reported in more than 80 countries where the disease isn’t typically found, according to the latest CDC data.
The U.S. leads the world in monkeypox cases, with nearly 9,500, followed by Spain with more than 5,000, Germany with nearly 3,000, and the U.K. with more than 2,900. France and Brazil have also reported more than 2,000 cases, with the rest of the countries reporting fewer than 1,000 cases.
In the U.S., New York leads the country with more than 2,000 cases, according to the latest CDC data. California has reported about 1,300 cases, followed by Florida with 976 cases, and Georgia, Texas, and Illinois with more than 700 cases. The rest of the states have reported fewer than 300 cases, with only Wyoming reporting no cases so far.
SIGA: “SIGA Announces BARDA Exercise of Procurement Options Valued at Approximately $26 Million for IV TPOXX.”
Reuters: “U.S. to buy Siga’s IV drug worth $26 million to fight monkeypox outbreak.”
CDC: “2022 Monkeypox Outbreak Global Map,” updated Aug. 9, 2022.; “Monkeypox: 2022 U.S. Map & Case Count,” updated Aug. 9, 2022.
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