Briefing

*Emergent BioSolutions [EBS] received a $400 million contract from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to provide 18.75 million doses of the anthrax vaccine BioThrax through Sept. 2010 for the strategic national stockpile. Contract terms also include an additional $34 million if the Food and Drug Administration approves the company's pending supplement to its biologics license application to extend the shelf life of BioThrax from three years to four years. On top of all that, HHS will provide up to $11.5 million toward development of BioThrax for post exposure treatment. Emergent BioSolutions expects to receive $8.8 million of the development funds in the fourth quarter of 2007. The company will also receive an additional $2.2 million for delivering all the doses into the stockpile over the contract term. The total potential value of the award is $448 million. Under previous contract Emergent BioSolutions has provided 10 million doses of BioThrax to the national stockpile under $223 million in contracts. HHS says the latest contract will allow it to maintain a stockpile of at least 10 million doses of the anthrax vaccine through 2011.

*General Dynamics [GD] won a potential five-year, $71.4 million contract from the Department of Homeland Security to provide systems engineering, architecture, governance, program management, information assurance, and national security systems services to the Office of Intelligence and Analysis. The first year task order is for $11.2 million. The contract was awarded under the EAGLE program. GD has performed similar services to the Office of Intelligence and Analysis since 2003.

*The Transportation Security Administration has certified General Electric's [GE] new CTX 9400 Explosive Detection System (EDS), the first product in the company's multi-generational improvement plan based on the legacy CTX 9000 EDS line. GE has already shipped 14 CTX 9400 units to an international airport customer and one CTX 9400 upgrade kit to another international customer. The upgrade kits mean that airports don't have to strip out their old CTX 9000s in order to gain the improvements brought by the 9400 systems. Those improvements include better inspection performance, a significant reduction in shielding alarms, and better system availability through enhanced reliability and diagnostics. The next step in GE's CTX 9000 series product improvement plans is the CTX 9800, which as already completed initial data collection exercises at a major airport in preparation for the upcoming certification process.

*Guardian Technologies International [GDTI], which is developing imaging software to improve the threat detection capability of X-Ray systems, says the Department of Homeland Security's Transportation Security Laboratory has extended testing of the company's technology for six more months. The extended testing of the PinPoint threat-detection technology is being done under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement. "We believe we are one step closer to making PinPoint available to airports across the country and around the world," says Bill Donovan, president and chief operating officer of Guardian. The company says that PinPoint enhances current X-Ray systems by autonomously determining the actual chemical composition of items viewed rather than relying on operator interpretation.

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