HYDERABAD: One of India's leading vaccine and bio-therapeutic manufacturers, Bharat Biotech is working on a vaccine to fight the life-threatening COVID-19 virus. The vaccine will be of the intranasal kind.
The company is working together with Virologists belonging to the University of Wisconsin–Madison and also FluGen, a vaccine company, in order to develop this vaccine.
The vaccine will be called 'CoroFlu' and it has begun its animal testing phase in America. The product will be ready for human trials in the next three months.
Raches Ella, the head of Business Development from Bharat Biotech has said, “Bharat Biotech will manufacture the vaccine, conduct clinical trials, and prepare to produce almost 300 million doses of vaccine for global distribution. Under the collaboration agreement, FluGen will transfer its existing manufacturing processes to Bharat Biotech to enable the company to scale up production and produce the vaccine for clinical trials."
Previously, Bharat Biotech has successfully developed up to 16 vaccines, one of them being for the H1N1 flu, i.e. the swine flu. This flu caused a pandemic in the year 2009.
CoroFlu will be created with the help of FloroGen's flu vaccine candidate, known as M2SR. It is a vaccine with novel live influenza which protects mice and ferrets from avian influenza, which is highly pathogenic.
The current animal testing happening in America at the University of Wisconsin–Madison will take up to a couple of months.
The company also gave out a statement where it said, "Bharat Biotech in Hyderabad will then begin production scale-up for safety and efficacy testing in humans. CoroFlu could be in human clinical trials by October."
It also said, "Four Phase-I and Phase-II clinical trials involving hundreds of subjects have shown the M2SR flu vaccine to be safe and well-tolerated. This safety profile, M2SR’s ability to induce a strong immune the response, and the ability of influenza viruses to carry sequences of other viruses make M2SR an attractive option for rapidly developing CoroFlu as a safe and effective SARS-CoV-2 vaccine."