Moderna’s new mRNA vaccine manufacturing facility underway at Monash University

Monash University President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Margaret Gardner AC joined other dignitaries including state and federal ministers and Moderna representatives for a ground breaking ceremony at the new Moderna vaccine manufacturing facility. Image credit:

Biotech giant Moderna has begun constructing its new mRNA vaccine manufacturing facility at Monash University’s Clayton campus in Melbourne’s southeast. 

Set to be Moderna’s first manufacturing site in the Southern Hemisphere and the first-ever to be built on a university campus, the new facility is expected to turbo-charge the growth of Victoria’s sovereign mRNA industry. 

The mRNA vaccine manufacturing facility is expected to go live in 2024, producing up to 100 million doses per annum, including COVID-19, influenza, and respiratory syncytial virus vaccines. 

The facility’s construction is part of a 10-year strategic partnership between Moderna and the federal and Victorian governments. It also comes less than four months after Monash was selected to house the new facility. 

The new facility will be located within the Monash Technology Precinct, joining a roster of cutting-edge research and technology facilities established in the precinct, such as CSIRO, Australian Synchrotron, Victorian Heart Hospital, and Melbourne Centre for Nanofabrication.

Professor Margaret Gardner, president and vice-chancellor of Monash University, said the Moderna facility will further strengthen the precinct, which is already established as one of Australia’s strongest ecosystems of globally connected innovators and enterprises across technology, manufacturing, health sustainable development, and education. 

It will also be complemented by the Monash Centre for Advanced mRNA Medicine Manufacturing and Workforce training, which Monash is establishing in partnership with the Victorian government. 

“Together, Moderna’s production facility and the new Centre combine two critical elements of an mRNA innovation ecosystem that will deliver long-term health and economic benefits for the community, and strengthen Monash’s position at the forefront of mRNA/RNA therapeutic,” Gardner said.

According to a press release issued by the Victorian government, construction of the new facility will support 500 jobs, on top of another 500 medical manufacturing and research roles across Victoria’s burgeoning biotechnology industry once operational. 

“The start of construction on this landmark facility is another step we take to ensure Australia has an onshore supply of respiratory mRNA vaccines that can be rapidly scaled-up to fortify the country against pathogenic threats and future pandemics,” said Moderna Australia and New Zealand General Manager Michael Azrak.