Covaxin, the coronavirus vaccine being developed by Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), is expected to be at least 60 per cent effective.
The company late Thursday received the approval of the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI's) Expert Committee to start the final phase of trials. On October 2, the pharma company had applied to the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) asking its permission to conduct Phase 3 trials for its vaccine candidate.
"The benchmark for the efficacy of our anti-Covid-19 vaccine is 60%. We will be conducting the largest Phase 3 trial for Covaxin, and the efficacy results should be available by early April-May, 2021," Sai Prasad, executive director, Bharat Biotech International Ltd, told Hindustan Times.
Besides, Bharat Biotech, indigenously developed vaccine candidate by Zydus Cadila Ltd is in Phase 2 of human clinical trials. The Pune-based Serum Institute of India, which has partnered with AstraZeneca for manufacturing the Oxford COVID-19 vaccine candidate, is also conducting Phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials of its candidate in India.
More than 100 coronavirus vaccine candidates are in different stages of development all across the world.
Meanwhile, the Indian government has earmarked nearly Rs 50,000 crore ($7 billion) to inoculate the world's second most populous nation after China against COVID-19, according to reports. It has assessed an all-in cost of approximately $6-7 per person in the country of 1.3 billion. The funds provisioned so far are for the current financial year ending March 31.