Drugs Controller General of India (DGCI) has given Pune’s Serum Institute of India (SII) the green light for conducting the Phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials of the Covid-19 vaccine. Oxford University has developed the vaccine along with the company AstraZeneca.
1600 people above 18 years of age have participated for the vaccine trials. These will be conducted across 19-odd sites like AIIMS Delhi, BJ Medical College Pune, PGIMER Chandigarh, Andhra Medical College Vishakapatnam and more.
Department of Biotechnology (DBT) secretary Dr Renu Swarup had earlier told The Indian Express that these sites had been readied as part of India’s preparations for final stage trials for the Oxford vaccine candidate.
This vaccine is a strong candidate in the race to develop an effective vaccine against Covid-19. SII has a tie-up with Swedish-British pharmaceutical giant AstraZenca to manufacture the vaccine.
Phase 2 and 3 clinical trials of this vaccine are on in the United Kingdom. Phase 3 in Brazil and Phase 1 and 2 in South Africa.
Other contenders in the race include Pfizer with BioNTech, and Moderna with the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd. is the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally (more than 1.5 billion doses). which includes Polio vaccine as well as Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hib, BCG, r-Hepatitis B, Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccines.