Even though there are local COVID-19 vaccine candidates being developed in the country, India is likely to give the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine the first preference for Indians by the end of 2020. The indigenous vaccine candidates are also going to hit the market after a few weeks of the launch of the Oxford vaccine.
“If the vaccine gets the nod, and given that it is being produced in India, it makes sense to use it,” a source closer to the development said. For the Oxford vaccine, Pune-based Serum Institute is a manufacturing partner of British pharma giant AstraZeneca and it is ahead of the locally manufactured vaccines that have entered the human trials stage.
The phase II and phase III clinical trial of the Oxford vaccine is about to begin in India. The process has been initiated by the Indian pharmaceutical major Serum Institute of India.
AstraZeneca along with Serum Institute of India will manufacture COVID-19 vaccine for low-and-middle income nations.
Pune based drug maker has picked 17 sites in India to conduct the trial. A total of 1,600 candidates will participate in the study.
The Oxford candidate has fared better than other vaccines being developed outside of India. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has also pledged to help in manufacturing initial shots of the vaccine by Serum in India.