Representative Image
Representative Image

Today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has visited Zydus-Cadila, Ahmedabad; Bharat Biotech, Hyderabad, and Serum Institute, Pune, to review the status of the Covid-19 vaccine candidate for coronavirus infection.

The PM interacted with scientists and company heads and had known details about vaccine development and manufacturing process.

In India, top contenders are Covishield, Covaxin and ZyCov-D. And, there is a new hope that India can get a vaccine soon. But, who will supply the vaccine first for Indian population? Here, we take a look at these vaccine makers.

Pune-based Serum Institute of India's (SII) Covishield:

Covishield vaccine, is being developed by AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine in partnership with Serum Institute of India, Pune. Covishield is currently in the third phase trials stage.

The Serum Institute plans to launch its vaccine by January 2021, assured 100 million doses of the vaccine by Jan 2021

Serum Institute is expecting the results of the clinical trials of Covishield by January 2021. The manufacturer has announced that it would produce 50 million to 60 million doses of the vaccine candidate developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University every month from January.

Recently, CEO of Serum Institute, talking about the Covishield vaccine’s efficacy, said it will offer protection up to 90% in one dosage regime & 62% in another. The firm said the vaccine is low-cost and demands a storage requirement of 2-8 degree Celsius.

It is being reported that the vaccine could cost between Rs 500 and Rs 600 in the private market for the general public. It could offer to the government at a much lower price.

Serum could also apply for emergency use authorisation of Covishield in December in India after AstraZeneca-Oxford’s vaccine candidate has announced that it works better in low dose.

However, Serum can apply for authorisation in India, after Oxford-AstraZeneca candidate’s vaccine passes safety standards test in the United Kingdom.

Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin:

Bhart Biotech in Hyderabad is working on a COVID-19 vaccine called Covaxin. It is developing the vaccine in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and National Institute of Virology (NIV).

Currently, Covaxin is in phase 3 human trials. Phase 3 trials are being tested at 130 centres, in 25 cities and 10 states across the country.

Covaxin is an indigenous, inactivated vaccine developed from an Indian strain of the novel coronavirus.

Bharat Biotech had said its aim is to launch the vaccine in Q2 of 2021 if they get all the regulatory approvals.

Till now, the efficacy was found to be 62%. This is against the earlier 90% efficacy found for the group which received a half-dose shot. The safety and immunogenicity data of the phase one and two trials were submitted to the central drug regulator.

Ahmedabad-based Zydus-Cadila’s ZyCov-D:

Zydus-Cadila’s ZyCov-D is applying for phase 3 trials in December this year and is all set to launch vaccine launch by March 2021.

The company said after all regulatory approvals, it will initially manufacture 100 million doses. The results of phase 2 trials will come out next week after which the potential vaccine’s safety, efficacy would be ascertained.

The firm has announced that the vaccine is well-tolerated in all dose groups and no serious adverse events have been reported.

Recently, Bharat Biotech raised the logistical query on how to vaccinate 130 crore people with two injectable doses. It also said that work was on single-dose nasal drop vaccine.

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