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India develops world’s first Zika virus vaccine

India develops world s first Zika virus vaccine pardesi news 1459247793

In an important "Make in India" moment, scientists at a Hyderabad lab have claimed developing the world's first vaccine against the Zika Virus.

With a worldwide scare about the Zika virus continuing, India’s Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL), based in Hyderabad, has successfully developed and patented the world’s first Zika vaccine. The firm has developed two candidate vaccines from an imported live Zika virus. Trials on animals and humans have not yet begun and reports say they might still be a long time away.

According to the Chairman and managing director of BBIL Dr. Krishna Ella, “On Zika, we are probably the first vaccine company in the world to file a vaccine candidate patent about nine months ago”. He further informed that they have contacted the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) to help with the trials and they were most cooperative. They have confirmed they will examine the vaccine from the scientific point of view and assess the feasibility of taking it forward.

Dr Ella and the BBIL is reportedly  all set to seek even the Indian PM Narendra Modi’s direct intervention to expedite the process of fast tracking the vaccine’s development and delivery, by skipping regulatory clearances to get the vaccine to countries that need help, including Brazil, where the epidemic first broke out. "The Prime Minister should take up this project as it helps communities like Brazil and Colombia where we can do vaccine diplomacy. We are a part of the BRICS group and we have to help them. We would love to help. We want global public health to benefit," he said. 

Dr Ella further informed that in a best case scenario his company can make one million doses of the vaccine in four months.

Reports say experts have lauded BBIL’s foresight in working on a vaccine on a neglected disease that has now taken global epidemic proportions. Dr Ella is also credited with making the world's cheapest hepatitis-B vaccine and the bulk supply of the oral polio vaccine.  He has also supplied 3.5 billion doses among several other vaccines. Ella's company has also partnered with Indian government to make the first-ever Indian-made vaccine called 'Rotavac', a vaccine against an infectious diarrhea disease caused by Rota virus that afflicts children.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared Zika and its suspected link to birth defects a global health emergency. Over 20 countries in Latin America have reported an outbreak and a rare case of the Zika virus being transmitted through sex has been reported in Texas, the US.  With a worldwide scare about the Zika virus continuing, India’s Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL), based in Hyderabad, has successfully developed and patented the world’s first Zika vaccine. The firm has developed two candidate vaccines from an imported live Zika virus. Trials on animals and humans have not yet begun and reports say they might still be a long time away.

According to the Chairman and managing director of BBIL Dr. Krishna Ella, “On Zika, we are probably the first vaccine company in the world to file a vaccine candidate patent about nine months ago”. He further informed that they have contacted the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) to help with the trials and they were most cooperative. They have confirmed they will examine the vaccine from the scientific point of view and assess the feasibility of taking it forward.

Dr Ella and the BBIL is reportedly  all set to seek even the Indian PM Narendra Modi’s direct intervention to expedite the process of fast tracking the vaccine’s development and delivery, by skipping regulatory clearances to get the vaccine to countries that need help, including Brazil, where the epidemic first broke out. "The Prime Minister should take up this project as it helps communities like Brazil and Colombia where we can do vaccine diplomacy. We are a part of the BRICS group and we have to help them. We would love to help. We want global public health to benefit," he said. 

Dr Ella further informed that in a best case scenario his company can make one million doses of the vaccine in four months.

Reports say experts have lauded BBIL’s foresight in working on a vaccine on a neglected disease that has now taken global epidemic proportions. Dr Ella is also credited with making the world's cheapest hepatitis-B vaccine and the bulk supply of the oral polio vaccine.  He has also supplied 3.5 billion doses among several other vaccines. Ella's company has also partnered with Indian government to make the first-ever Indian-made vaccine called 'Rotavac', a vaccine against an infectious diarrhea disease caused by Rota virus that afflicts children.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared Zika and its suspected link to birth defects a global health emergency. Over 20 countries in Latin America have reported an outbreak and a rare case of the Zika virus being transmitted through sex has been reported in Texas, the US.   

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Patrick Callahan

Pardesi News Reporter

Pardesi News Reporter

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