Auburn company producing vials that hold Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine

Updated: Nov. 17, 2020 at 6:15 PM EST
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AUBURN, Ala. (WTVM) - There is some good news on the COVID-19 vaccine front.

The biotech company Moderna, said its vaccine is nearly 95 percent effective, and an East Alabama-based company is playing an integral role in that vaccine’s distribution and storage.

Auburn-based company SiO2 Materials Science is producing unique vials that hold doses of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine.

“For us, we’ve been shipping vials to the companies, including Moderna, since August of this year,” said Lawrence Ganti, the Chief Business Officer of SiO2.

SiO2 struck a $143 million contract with the federal government back in June to ramp up production of this vials, each of which contains seven to ten doses of the vaccine. Ganti said they have shipped more than 20 million of these vials so far to Moderna and other pharma companies producing Coronavirus vaccines.

“We joke, but it’s like saving the world one vial at a time,” he said.

Ganti told News Leader Nine the company’s vials, made of plastic with a microscopic layer of glass inside, are the best of both worlds when it comes to serving the needs of the medical community. They’re also manufactured right in Auburn.

“One of the reasons why the Operation Warp Speed folks wanted to partner with us is to really make sure we had domestic manufacturing, domestic supply to ensure that supply chain here,” Ganti said.

That local manufacturing means jobs. Ganti said they’ve grown from 109 full-time employees to more than 450 this year.

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