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Hyderabad-based company to make Providence Therapeutics' mRNA Covid vaccine

Hyderabad-based Biological E. entered into an agreement with an Canadain company to manufacture its mRNA COVID-19 vaccine in India (AP)Premium
Hyderabad-based Biological E. entered into an agreement with an Canadain company to manufacture its mRNA COVID-19 vaccine in India (AP)

  • Hyderabad-based Biological E. entered into a licensing agreement with Canada's Providence Therapeutics Holdings to manufacture its mRNA COVID-19 vaccine
  • Biological E. said, it will run a clinical trial of Providence's vaccine in India and seek emergency use approval for it

Hyderabad-based Biological E. has entered into a licensing agreement with Canada's Providence Therapeutics Holdings to manufacture its mRNA COVID-19 vaccine in India, the company said on Tuesday. The company has a separate deal to produce about 600 million doses of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 shot annually

As per the statement issued by Biological E., it will run a clinical trial of Providence's vaccine in India and seek emergency use approval for it.

Providence will sell up to 30 million doses of its mRNA vaccine, PTX-COVID19-B, to Biological E., and will also provide the necessary technology transfer of the shot, with a minimum production capacity of 600 million doses in 2022 and a target capacity of 1 billion doses. However, the financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

Biological E.'s managing director Mahima Datla said, "The mRNA platform has emerged as the front runner in delivering the first vaccines for emergency use to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

Messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) vaccines prompt the body to make a protein that is part of the virus, triggering an immune response. U.S. companies Pfizer and Moderna use mRNA technology in their COVID-19 shots.

Drugs Controller General of India has approved clinical trials of another mRNA vaccine developed by local firm Gennova Biopharmaceuticals, and the government has said it will fund the studies.

A total of 21.60 crore vaccine doses has been administered in the country

India has been struggling with a devastating second wave of the pandemic and has managed to fully vaccinate only about 3% of its population.

A total of 21.60 crore vaccine doses has been administered in the country so far. Out of these, 1.67 crore doses were given to health workers, 2.42 crore to front line workers, 15.48 crore to people in 45+ age group, and 2.03 doses have been administered to those in 18-44 age group.

Last month, the union health minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan had said that the country will be in a position to vaccination its entire adult population by the end of this year.

On Monday, the Serum Institute of India said it will increase production of AstraZeneca's shot by nearly 40% in June, a step towards bridging the shortfall in the country.

(With inputs from agencies)

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