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Home >Science >Health >India's Biological E aims to produce 60 crore doses of Johnson & Johnson covid vaccine a year

Hyderabad-based Biological E is looking at contract-manufacturing 60 crore doses of Johnson & Johnson covid vaccine a year, Reuters reported, citing a top official of the Indian company. In August, Biological E had entered into an agreement with Janssen Pharmaceutica NV, one of the Janssen Pharmaceutical companies of Johnson & Johnson, for the creation/enhancement of manufacturing capacities for drug substance and drug product for Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate.

"We are targeting 600 million doses for J&J," said Mahima Datla, managing director of the privately-held company said today. "This will be in addition to our own product for which we are targeting approximately 1 billion doses."

Biological E is also looking at producing about 100 crore doses of its own covid vaccine year. Biological E's own covid vaccine is under clinical trials and interim data is expected this quarter.

The Johnson & Johnson covid vaccine is currently under regulatory review in the US. J&J applied this month for U.S. emergency use authorization. It expects to have some vaccine ready for distribution as soon as authorized but has not said how much.

The vaccine is one-shot, as opposed to Pfizer's and Moderna Inc's two-dose vaccines, and can be stored in a refrigerator.

US officials have hoped that the ease of giving the J&J vaccine will mean that states will be able to more quickly immunize residents.

The drugmaker's application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) follows its Jan. 29 report in which it said the vaccine had a 66% rate of preventing infections in its large global trial.

The FDA said on Thursday evening that it has scheduled a meeting of its Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee on Feb. 26, to discuss the company's request for emergency use authorization.

Vaccines from Pfizer Inc/BioNTech SE and Moderna Inc were authorized a day after such a meeting.

J&J's vaccine uses a common cold virus, adenovirus 26, to ferry instructions for making coronavirus proteins into cells and trigger an immune response.

The Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are based on messenger RNA (mRNA), which requires them to be stored in a freezer. (With Agency Inputs)

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