The national-level research is being enabled by the office of the principal scientific adviser to the government of India’s programme that will work on collaborations between industry and academia
NEW DELHI :
India’s top packaged consumer goods company—Hindustan Unilever Ltd. (HUL), is funding a research project aimed at understanding immune response to SARS-CoV-2 among vaccinated people and vaccine efficacy among Indians.
The national-level research is being enabled by the office of the principal scientific adviser to the government of India’s programme that will work on collaborations between industry and academia.
HUL and UIPL (Unilever Industries Private Limited) R&D will provide CSR funding for the research project that will build a “holistic multi-dimensional understanding" of immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 in vaccinated people, the company said in a statement on Tuesday.
The research is being carried out by the platform VISION, or Vaccine Immunology Studies—Indian Outbreak-response Network, which includes top public and private research institutes such as National Centre for Biological Science, Institute for Stem Cell Science and Regenerative Medicine, and Indian Institute for Science Education and Research. Additionally, National Chemical Laboratory, and Clinical Research Centres in Bangalore—Baptist Hospital and St John’s Research Institute, Christian Medical College in Vellore, and KEM Hospital and Research Centre and Symbiosis Hospital and Research Centre in Pune—will partner in the study.
HUL will also provide additional analytical and data analyses support through its R&D scientists to the consortium partners, it said.
“This is a first-of-its-kind national level multi-centre study on long-term protection and immunogenicity of vaccines, in combination with an understanding of nutritional and ‘skin immunity’ status in the Indian population," the company said in a statement on Tuesday.
The move comes as half of India’s eligible population has been vaccinated with at least a single dose of vaccine.
“Vaccine efficacy is one of the questions foremost on people’s minds today. Partnering with the best scientific minds of the country, and backed by world-class research, this study aims to understand not just vaccine immunogenicity but also to obtain deeper insights on whether factors such as nutritional deficiencies or the skin’s natural immunity, have a role to play in immune response.
Given India’s diverse and large population, collaborative research on the immune response to vaccination and its correlation to genetics and nutrition, can help our approach to public healthcare responses and shaping policies, said Dr K. VijayRaghavan, principal scientific adviser, government of India.
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