New Delhi: The Union Health Ministry has made an agreement with Biological-E, a Hyderabad based vaccine maker, to procure as many as 30 crore of anti-covid jabs. The pharma company will be producing these vaccine doses from August-December 2021.
The vaccine that is yet to be manufactured is currently undergoing Phase-3 clinical trial after it showed efficacy against the virus in the Phase 1 and 2 clinical trials. The vaccine being developed by Biological-E is a RBD protein sub-unit vaccine and will be available in the next few months.
The development of Biological-E's vaccine has been supported by the government from the pre clinical stage until now. If proved effective in final stage trials, the vaccine will be India's second indigenous vaccine to receive DCGI approval after Bharat Biotech's Covaxin which is currently being administered under government's nationwide inoculation drive.
The Government of India has paid Rs 1500 crore to the vaccine maker to develop its vaccine candidate.
Production of Biological-E vaccine forms a crucial part of government's ‘Mission COVID Suraksha- the Indian COVID-19 Vaccine Development Mission’ which was launched to reinforce and accelerate COVID-19 vaccine development efforts as part of the third stimulus package, Atmanirbhar 3.0.
"The COVID-19 vaccine of Biological-E is currently undergoing Phase-3 clinical trial after showing promising results in Phase 1 and 2 clinical trials. The vaccine being developed by Biological-E is a RBD protein sub-unit vaccine and is likely to be available in the next few months," the government said.
The pharma targets to produce one billion dose production capacity in 2022. “Providence will provide the necessary technology transfer for Biological E to manufacture mRNA vaccines in India, with a minimum production capacity of 600 million doses in 2022 and a target capacity of 1 billion doses, a company statement read.
Apart from this, development of 5-6 indigenous vaccine candidates is currently underway in the country. Some of these are way closer to make a mark in the public health system and will be introduced shortly, as suggested by various media reports.