Zydus Cadila is planning to start the trials of its COVID-19 vaccine, ZyCoV-D, in children of 5-12 years age group after covering adults and 12-18 years children under its ongoing clinical trials.
The Ahmedabad-based company has covered over 800 children in 12-18 years age group under its trials. "We will have a good amount of data on children in this age group. If everything goes well in terms of safety, the vaccine will potentially be approved for use in children aged 12 to 18 years," Cadila Healthcare Managing Director Sharvil Patel told the Times of India.
On being asked about plans to test the vaccine for use in children below 12 years age, Patel said vaccine developement takes place in phases, starting with adults, followed by 12-18 years age group and then for under 12 years children.
He said the next phase would be to test the COVID-19 vaccine in children in 5-12 years age group.
"This platform will be more useful for children because it will be devoid of any side effects that you get to see in many other vaccines. Another benefit of our vaccine is that it involves needle-free administration," the publication quoted Patel as saying.
ZyCoV-D is a DNA plasmid vaccine, which uses a portion of the genetic code -- DNA or RNA -- in the virus to stimulate an immune response. Cadila is aiming to submit the emergency use application for the vaccine by June. The vaccine is meant to be given in three doses, but Cadila is also doing trials on a two-dose regimen.
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