Covid Vaccine India : India May Get 100 Million Doses Of AstraZeneca Covid-19 Vaccine By December - Adar Poonawalla

Serum Institute of India, the world's largest vaccine producer, is ramping up production of AstraZeneca's potential Covid-19 vaccine so that it can deliver 100 million doses by December for the vaccination drive that may begin across the country.

Covid Vaccine India : India May Get 100 Million Doses Of AstraZeneca Covid-19 Vaccine By December - Adar Poonawalla
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Serum Institute of India, the world's largest vaccine producer, is ramping up production of AstraZeneca's potential Covid-19 vaccine so that it can deliver 100 million doses by December for the vaccination drive that may begin across the country.

Serum Institute of India has joined hands with AstraZeneca for the production of coronavirus vaccine named 'Covishield', developed by Oxford University. The coronavirus vaccine candidate is currently in the phase 2-3 clinical trial in the country. Serum Institute of India and AstraZeneca has partnered to produce at least 1 billion doses of the Covid-19 vaccine.

Adar Poonawalla, the CEO of Serum Institute of India, said the SII may get emergency authorisation from New Delhi by December if the coronavirus vaccine candidate shows effective result, Bloomberg report.

According to the report, Adar Poonawalla said that "the intial amount will go to India".

On Thursday, Serum Institute of India said it has made 40 million doses of AstraZeneca's potential Covid-19 vaccine, and would soon begin making Novavax's rival shot, as they both seek regulatory approval, news agency Reuters reported.

Serum Institute of India, however, declined to comment on whether the 40 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine were meant for global supply or only for India, the Reuters report said.

The AstraZeneca vaccine, co-developed by Oxford University, is the most advanced in human testing in India, Serum said, adding that the company and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) will pursue "early availability" of the shot in India.

The ICMR had funded the clinical trial site fees for the AstraZeneca vaccine, Serum said. The company and the ICMR are currently conducting Phase 2/3 clinical trials of the shot at 15 centres across India.

While there are no Covid-19 vaccines approved yet and trials are still under way to prove they are safe and effective, leading drugmakers have been funded to begin production early to expedite deliveries, as the pandemic has killed more than 1.2 million people worldwide.

AstraZeneca AZN.L said last week that it was holding back deliveries of its Covid-19 vaccine candidate while it awaits the data from late-stage clinical trials, which got delayed due to a summer dip in UK coronavirus infections.

For production of the Novavax NVAX.O vaccine, Serum said it has received the bulk of the vaccine from the US company and will soon fill and finish them in vials.

Novavax, which is testing its vaccine in a late stage study in the UK, last month postponed the start of its US trial by roughly a month due to delays in scaling up the manufacturing process. The vaccine made in the UK is currently being tested in large efficacy trials in the UK, Brazil, South Africa and USA.

Serum said it had enrolled 1,600 participants in India for the late-stage trials of AstraZeneca’s candidate, and also plans to seek regulatory approval to run late-stage trials for the Novavax vaccine.

India Today with Agency Inputs