Serum Institute to produce additional 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses
Photo Credit: AFP

The Serum Institute of India (SII) on Tuesday said that it will produce additional 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses for India and low and middle-income countries in 2021.

"Serum Institute of India (SII) to produce up to an additional 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses for India and low and middle-income countries in 2021. The announcement takes forward the collaboration between SII, Gavi, Vaccine Alliance, and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation," SII said in a statement.

The expansion follows August’s announcement of up to 100 million doses to be delivered by the collaboration, bringing the total now to be delivered by the partnership to up to 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines. "This brings the total number of vaccine doses to be covered by the partnership between SII, Gavi, and the Gates Foundation to an aggregate of up to 200 million doses, following the initial agreement for up to 100 million doses announced in August," SII added.

Adar Poonawalla, CEO of Serum Institute of India, said that this will further bolster up the fight against COVID-19. “The collaboration further bolsters up our fight against COVID-19! Through the avid support of Gavi and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, we will now manufacture and deliver up to an additional 100 million doses of immunogenic and safe-proven future COVID-19 vaccines to India and low- and middle-income countries in 2021,” a company statement quoted Adar Poonawalla saying.

Serum Institute of India has the licence to produce and market two of the leading vaccine candidates, one developed by AstraZeneca and the Oxford University, and the other one by US company Novavax.

The Serum Institute of India (SII) began the third phase or the last stage of a clinical trial of the Covid-19 vaccine 'Covishield', being developed by Oxford University, on September 21. "We have started the phase-III trials of the vaccine candidate. We will administer dose to 150 to 200 volunteers," said Dr Muralidhar Tambe, Dean, Sassoon General Hospital, reported PTI.

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