Covid vaccine in India: Pharma firms on different stages of trial, other updates

Coronavirus vaccine updates in India: From Dr Reddy’s proposal for phase 2, 3 trials to Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin use of adjuvant Alhydroxiquim-II to boost immune response, these are the updates you need to know.

1) Dr Reddy’s to resubmit application for trials of Russian vaccine

An expert panel at the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) has asked Dr Reddy’s Laboratories to submit a revised protocol for conducting both phase 2 and phase 3 human clinical trials for the Russian vaccine against COVID-19, Sputnik V, in India, sources said Monday.

The Hyderabad-based pharmaceutical company had applied to the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) late last week, seeking permission to conduct phase-3 human clinical trials of the Russian vaccine.

2) Bharat Biotech’s Covid-19 vaccine to use ViroVax’s adjuvant for longer-lasting immunity

Vaccines major Bharat Biotech on Monday announced its coronavirus disease (Covid-19) vaccine Covaxin will use adjuvant Alhydroxiquim-II to boost immune response.

An adjuvant is a pharmacological or immunological agent that improves the immune response of a vaccine by producing more antibodies and providing longer-lasting immunity.

3) Covid vaccination drive aims to cover 200-250 mn by Jul

The Centre estimates to receive and utilise 40-50 crore doses of COVID-19 vaccine covering 20-25 crore people by July next year and it is preparing a format for the states to submit by October-end their list of priority population to be inoculated, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Sunday.

He said priority would be given to health workers engaged in COVID-19 management in getting inoculated and asserted the Centre would ensure fair and equitable distribution of vaccines, once they are ready.

4) Made in India vaccine

Currently two indigenously developed vaccine candidates, one by Bharat Biotech in collaboration with ICMR and another one by Zydus Cadila Ltd, are in the phase 2 of the human clinical trials.

The Pune-based Serum Institute of India, which has partnered with AstraZeneca for manufacturing the Oxford COVID-19 vaccine candidate also is conducting Phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials of the candidate in India.

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