Bharat Biotech & Washington Univ developing nasal vax for Covid: Minister

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New Delhi, Oct 18 | Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Sunday informed that Bharat Biotech will develop an intranasal vaccine for Sars-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19.

The minister said that the Hyderabad-based drugs and vaccine research and manufacturing company has entered into an agreement with Washington University and St. Louis University for the trials of the nasal vaccine candidate.

“It (Bharat Biotech) has entered into an agreement with Washington University’s School of Medicine under which the company will conduct trials, produce and market an intranasal vaccine for the COVID-19,” Vardhan told his social media audience at his weekly webinar, Sunday Samvaad.

The minister also informed that the Phase 1 trials of the vaccine candidate will take place in St Louis University’s vaccine and treatment evaluation unit while further stages of the trials will be conducted in India.

“Bharat Biotech on receipt of regulatory approval will pursue further stages of clinical trials in India,” he added.

Vardhan also informed about the development of another intranasal vaccine by the US-based biotech company Codagenix along with Serum Institute of India.

“Codagenix is collaborating with the Serum Institute of India to develop CDX-005, which is the company’s intranasal, live-attenuated vaccine candidate for SARS-CoV-2. The preclinical animal studies have been successfully completed, and Codagenix expects to initiate a Phase 1 first-in-human clinical trial in the UK by the end of 2020,” he said.

CDX-005 is a single dose intranasal vaccine made with a live attenuated version of the virus.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has cataloged 169 candidate vaccines for the COVID-19.

The vast majority of these use a dead virus, genetic material from the virus, or components of the virus, such as the spike protein. Only Codagenix and two other developers have used a live attenuated version of the virus.

Source: IANS

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