India is all set to get its first indigenous vaccine against pneumonia by next week. The vaccine has been developed by the Serum Institute of India (SII) and will be launched next week by the Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan. The vaccine is said to be much more affordable than the ones manufactured by Pfizer and GlaxoSmith vaccines.
After reviewing the trial data of the three phases submitted by the Pune firm, the Pneumococcal Polysaccharide Conjugate vaccine was granted approval for regulation in the market by India's drug regulator. The vaccine is used for immunity against pneumonia and other invasive diseases caused by "Streptococcus pneumonia" in infants.
Phase 1, 2, and 3 of the vaccine were conducted both in India and in the African nation Gambia.
Pneumonia being a respiratory disease requires attention, especially during the current COVID-19 pandemic, which is why the presence of such a vaccine becomes extremely relevant. The data collected by UNICEF revealed that close to one lakh children under the age of five years die in India every year due to the pneumococcal disease.
The vaccine was prequalified by the WHO in the month of January, reported The New Indian Express. "Moving towards prime minister's clarion call of Atmanirbhar Bharat, we have achieved one more historic milestone during the lockdown period of COVID-19 pandemic by developing India's first world-class indigenous pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) and obtained Indian licensure," stated a letter which was written by Prakash Kumar Singh, Additional Director, Government and Regulatory Affairs at the Serum Institute of India (SII).
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