Bharat Biotech, maker of Covid-19 vaccine Covaxin is working on two other Covid vaccines across different technology platforms, the company told Business Today.
Bharat Biotech's upcoming intranasal covid-19 vaccine, the first nasal vaccine, has already been given regulatory approval for phase 2/3 trials last year in August.
BBV154 is an intranasal replication-deficient chimpanzee adenovirus SARS-CoV-2 vectored vaccine. Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech has in-licensed technology from Washington University in St Louis, USA. "Covaxin has already proven that it can protect effectively against all variants including the deadly delta, apart from COVAXIN®, the company is also working on three other Covid vaccines across different technology platforms, including an intranasal vaccine that will prevent transmission," a company spokesperson said.
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The phase 1 clinical trial for the nasal vaccine has been completed for the 18-60 years age group. Bharat Biotech's whole-virion inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, Covaxin, is already a part of India's covid-19 vaccination programme. Currently, the company is supplying 5-6 crores doses of Covaxin monthly.
"The capacity expansion has been implemented across multiple facilities in Hyderabad, Ankleshwar and Bangalore, to reach our goal of 1 billion doses/year. We are building one of the largest production capacities for inactivated viral vaccines worldwide. Currently, we are delivering 55-60 million doses each month, which will touch 70-80 million soon by February-March 2022," the spokesperson said.
Bharat Biotech said that it has several vaccine programmes underway, such as vaccines against Cholera, Malaria, Chikungunya, Zika, Paratyphi A, Non-typhoidal Salmonella, etc. most importantly to address the needs of India and other developing world countries, an intranasal vaccine is also under development for COVID.
"We will continue to grow our partnerships beyond India and hope to accomplish a foray into the US market when covaxin gets the EU nod. Our plans include setting up manufacturing facilities in other nations as well which is currently on the drawing board," the spokesperson said.
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"Bharat Biotech's new vaccines under development that include Zika, Malaria, and Chikungunya's initial work have shown promising results and we will further the development, trials to achieve market approval and authorisation, the spokesperson said.
The company said that the manufacturing partnerships are being explored with our partners in other countries, who have prior expertise with commercial scale manufacture of inactivated viral vaccines under biosafety containment.
"To further increase capacities, Bharat Biotech has partnered with Indian Immunologicals (IIL) to manufacture the drug substance of Covaxin," said the spokesperson. Hyderabad based Bharat Biotech said that it is currently producing 60 to 70 million doses which will rise to 80 million soon. "We continue to augment our capacities and expect to reach our target of producing 1 billion doses per annum with our Hyderabad, Bangalore, Pune, and Ankleshwar plants going full stream this year," the spokesperson said.
"Bharat Biotech has commenced exports of covaxin. To start with, long pending export orders will be executed in early 2022 to countries that have granted emergency use approvals for covaxin and to those additional countries that are recently added to our export lists," the spokesperson added.
More than 60 countries have already shown interest to use our Whole-Virion Inactivated Vero Cell-derived platform technology vaccine against covid-19.
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