Coronavirus vaccine: ICMR, Bharat Biotech join hands to develop vaccine for Covid-1 Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL) have joined hands to develop a vaccine for treating Covid-19 using the virus strain isolated at ICMR's National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune .The strain has been transferred from NIV to Bharat Biotech International Ltd. (BBIL)
National Institute of Virology will provide support to BBIL for vaccine development. ICMR and BBIL will seek fast-track approvals to expedite vaccine development, subsequent animal studies and clinical evaluation of the candidate vaccine.
Globally, efforts are underway to develop a vaccine to treat Covid 19 which has stalled economic activity and led to death of over 2.77 lakh people across the world. Over 40.43 lakh people are infected by coronavirus in the world.
Italian scientists at Rome's Spallanzani Hospital have claimed that they are the first to neutralise the virus via a vaccine and that the initial results were "encouraging and beyond expectations".
Not only Italy but many other countries including the US, the UK and Israel are developing vaccines and crucial drugs to treat the deadly virus.
Israel's Defence Minister Naftali Bennett said on May 4 that the country's scientists had made a 'significant breakthrough' in coronavirus treatment by isolating a key antibody at its biological research laboratory.
The monoclonal neutralising antibody developed at the Israel Institute for Biological Research (IIBR) could neutralise the disease-causing coronavirus inside carriers' bodies.
The United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) has also allowed emergency use of the experimental drug Remdesivir to treat coronavirus patients.
On May 6, PM Narendra Modi chaired a meeting of the task force on coronavirus vaccine development to review India's progress in finding a cure. He took a detailed review of the vaccine development, drug discovery, diagnosis and testing.
The Prime Minister's Office released a statement after the meeting and stated that Indian companies have come across as innovators in early-stage vaccine development research. There is a three-pronged plan for the development of a vaccine.
The statement added that the first is repurposing existing drugs. There are at least four drugs that are undergoing synthesis and examination. "Secondly, the development of new candidate drugs and molecules are being driven by linking high performance computational approached with laboratory verification. Thirdly, plant extracts and products are being examined for general anti-viral properties," it added.Also read: Israel makes progress in coronavirus vaccine search; defence minister claims 'significant breakthrough'