Covid-19: Indian pharma firm to produce over 10 crore doses of Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine per year
Pharmaceutical company Hetero will begin production from next year.
Hyderabad-based pharmaceutical company Hetero Labs will produce over 100 million [10 crore] doses of Russia’s coronavirus vaccine Sputnik V per year from 2021, the Russian Direct Investment Fund announced on Friday.
Kirill Dmitriev, the chief executive officer of the Russian sovereign wealth fund, said in a statement the agreement will give India an “efficient solution” to the health crisis. “We are delighted to announce the agreement between RDIF [Russian Direct Investment Fund] and Hetero that will pave the way to production of the safe and highly effective Sputnik V vaccine on Indian soil,” Dmitriev said.
The CEO added: “Thanks to our cooperation with Hetero, we will be able to significantly increase production capacity and provide people of India with an efficient solution in this challenging period of the pandemic”.
B Murali Krishna Reddy, the director of international marketing at Hetero labs, meanwhile, said that the company was looking forward to the results of Russian vaccine’s clinical trials in India. “We believe that manufacturing the product locally is crucial to enable swift access to patients,” he said. In October, pharma major Dr Reddy’s Laboratories received approval from the Drugs Controller General of India to conduct adaptive Phase II and III human clinical trials of the Sputnik V vaccine in India.
Also read:Coronavirus: Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine to cost less than $10 in international markets
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The Russian sovereign wealth fund and Sputnik V developer Gamaleya National Center had on Tuesday announced the results of a new clinical trial of the vaccine, which showed that it was 91.4% effective on day 28 and over 95% effective on day 42. The trial was based on 39 confirmed cases and 18,794 patients. They also announced that the price of the vaccine will be below $10 (approximately Rs 740) in international markets.
Encouraging results from vaccine trials have raised hopes that the global pandemic can be contained by next year. Two vaccines, one by Pfizer/BioNTech and another by Moderna, were recently shown to be more than 90% effective in early analyses.
Pfizer, which has completed its trial, submitted an application on November 20 for emergency authorisation of the vaccine. Another vaccine candidate developed by the Oxford University and AstraZeneca on Monday showed an average efficiency of 70% among Covid-19 patients.
India has not signed a deal for a coronavirus vaccine yet so it is unclear when it will be available for use in the country. Availability of the vaccine in India will be subject to approval by domestic regulators, and the Indian government agreeing to purchase them. So far, many other nations including the United States, United Kingdom, the European Union, Australia and Israel have made deals to buy millions of doses of the vaccine.