Race for coronavirus vaccine
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Race for coronavirus vaccine intensifies in India: 6 firms in the fray

Chinese research institutes may have made news by being the first organization internationally to enter phase-II clinical trials to find a coronavirus vaccine, however, Indian drug manufacturers are not far behind.

6 Indian drug manufacturers are in a race for developing coronavirus vaccine, and on the basis of what these drug manufacturers claim and as most of the vaccine candidates are already in the animal trial phase – India may have a vaccine by next year.

“Serum Institute of India, Indian Immunologicals, Cadila Healthcare (Zydus Cadila), Bharat Biotech, Biological E and Mynvax are working to develop COVID-19 vaccines,” said Gagandeep Kang, vice-chair of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, and executive director, Translational Health Science and Technology Institute, Faridabad.

Kang added, “It is always a question of science, safety, efficacy, speed, as well as luck, however, there is a hope of a vaccine next year”.

Serum Institute has indicated that by the second quarter of 2022 a feasible vaccination could be developed. Initially, the company had given a timeline of the end of 2022, however, changed it later on. The firm is working with two vaccine candidates –

; now in the animal trial phase. Similarly, the Zydus Cadila has two vaccine candidates – which are under development – a DNA vaccine and an attenuated recombinant measles vaccine against coronavirus.

The DNA vaccine will work against the viral membrane of the protein responsible for the entry of the COVID-19 virus into the cell. The attenuated recombinant measles vaccine, which is being developed by its European research arm Etna Biotech, will certainly generate long-term neutralizing antibodies, which will provide immunity against the coronavirus.

“The firm has taken multiple approaches to develop a vaccine against COVID-19. We can expect a vaccine by the end of 2021 if the animal trials work out. However, it relies on the results of animal tests. The government, on its part, is moving very fast in this case and approvals, etc,” said Pankaj Patel, Chairman, Zydus Cadila.

In 2010, Zydus Cadila was the first Indian firm to come up with a swine flu vaccine.

Professionals really feel that right now there is a race for developing a vaccine against coronavirus but the demand for the vaccine might drop once a medication to treat the illness is discovered.

“It would take at least a year to see if an individual who has been administered the vaccine does not capture the infection. Efficacy testing of injections requires time. As an example, to examine whether antibodies are getting developed in an individual in sufficient quantity will take about six months,” said E Sreekumar, Chief scientific officer, Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology.

A drug firm official said, “Indian drug companies are working night and day to ensure they have a vaccine candidate as fast as possible. A number of fatal diseases including coronaviruses don’t have a vaccine. However, with coronaviruses re-emerging every few years, it is anticipated that there will be a steady demand for these vaccines.”

In this rush for the vaccine, Serum Institute- the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer in regards to the number of dosages, has decided to examine if the tuberculosis vaccine would help to increase immunity against the coronavirus. The institute has collaborated with Germany’s Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology and Vaccine Projekt Management that has a TB vaccination VPM10002 for tests. If the research study gives favorable results, the vaccine could be readily available by early 2021.

Bharat Biotech’s vaccine candidate is anticipated to be in human trials by the end of 2020. “We have begun the ‘CoroFlu’ animal tests and aim to complete it in 4-6 months, refinement of the CoroFlu vaccine principle and testing in laboratory animal models at UW-Madison is expected to take 3-6 months,” said Krishna Ella, Chairman, and Managing director, Bharat Biotech International.

Internationally, some of the prominent firms have said that by 2021 they can develop a vaccine against coronavirus. As an example, Johnson & Johnson, which recently revealed a lead COVID-19 vaccine candidate, said the firm plans to have clinical trials by September and win an emergency usage by early 2021. It intends to manufacture more than one billion doses by the following year. Moderna, Inovio, and Sanofi also are advancing their COVID-19 vaccine candidates.

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Author: Sruthi S

3 COMMENTS

  1. I am honest sincerely like to work and dedicated with my work and there will be any vaccancy please let me know i will be ready to work

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