India likely to get fourth vaccine by August: NITI Aayog

Hyderabad-based Biological E set to begin Phase 3 trails of its indigenous jab

Vaccine
India has already given Emergency Use Authorisation to three vaccine candidates | Photo: PTI

A fourth vaccine is in the offing in India with Hyderabad-based Biological E set to begin Phase 3 trails of its indigenous jab.

NITI Aayog member Dr VK Paul said in New Delhi on Wednesday that the new vaccine will be available in August.

“Phase 1, Phase 2 trials of the Indian vaccine of Biological E have finished and they’ll soon go into Phase 3. This is a very significant development as they have a capacity of 7 crore / 70 million vaccines per month,” Paul told reporters.

Biological E will manufacture a billion doses of vaccines, including the one developed by US multinational Johnson & Johnson under the Quad Vaccine Partnership, the White House had said last month. The statement came after the first summit of the leaders of Quad countries: India, US, Australia and Japan.

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“The United States, through the DFC (Development Finance Corporation), will work with Biological E Ltd, to finance increased capacity to support Biological E’s effort to produce at least 1 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines by the end of 2022 with Stringent Regulatory Authorization (SRA) and/or World Health Organization (WHO) Emergency Use Listing (EUL), including the Johnson & Johnson vaccine,” the statement said.

India has already given Emergency Use Authorisation to three vaccine candidates – indigenously manufactured Covishield and Covaxin, by the Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech, respectively; and Russia’s Sputnik. Sputnik is currently manufactured abroad but will eventually be produced locally.

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