Representative image: Reuters
More 'Made in India' coronavirus vaccines may launch in near future as three companies -- Dr Reddy's Laboratories, Serum Institute of India, and Biological E -- are preparing to submit data for approval of their vaccines or to start phase-3 trials.
This has raised hopes of additional supplies for immunisation programme of India, which has recorded over 1.10 crore COVID-19 cases and more than 1.56 lakh related deaths so far.
The country's inoculation drive is currently using two vaccines - Covaxin developed by Bharat Biotech and Covishield from the Oxford/AstraZeneca stable being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII). The vaccines are being administered to healthcare and frontline workers across the country.
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Biological E, which has tied up with vaccine maker Johnson & Johnson and Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, is planning to begin the Phase 3 trial of the COVID-19 vaccine candidate licensed from Baylor College next week, reported Business Today.
Also, Dr Reddy's has approached the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) for emergency use authorisation (EUA) for COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V. In September 2020, the Hyderabad-based firm partnered with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) to conduct the clinical trials of Sputnik V and for its distribution rights in India. The Russian COVID-19 vaccine has demonstrated an efficacy rate of 91.6 percent in the interim analysis of phase 3 clinical trial, which included data on 19,866 volunteers in Russia.
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The SII is manufacturing another vaccine in the country besides Covishield, which has already entered the market, said the report. The Pune-based firm is developing the vaccine of US drugmaker Novavax in India, which is expected to come to the market in the first half of 2021, added the report.
A total of 1,21,65,598 beneficiaries have so far been vaccinated for COVID-19 through 2,54,356 sessions held, according to a provisional report of the Union Health Ministry till 7 am on February 24. Of these, 64,98,300 healthcare workers and 42,68,898 frontline workers received their first dose of the vaccine, and 13,98,400 healthcare workers received the second dose, it said.Follow our full coverage on COVID-19 here.