The Serum Institute of India (SII) expects to soon receive World Health Organisation (WHO) emergency use authorisation for the Oxford University/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, produced for mid and low-income countries.
Reuters quoted SII chief executive Adar Poonawalla as saying at the Reuters Next conference: “The emergency use licensure from the WHO should be available and coming through in the next week or two, hopefully, because we have submitted everything.”
Poonawalla added that SII was aiming to initiate deliveries of the WHO-backed COVAX initiative by this month-end.
A single dose of the vaccine will cost $3 for low-income countries and sold to others at a ‘slightly higher’ rate.
The vaccine maker already sold 11 million doses to the Indian government, which is planning to initiate the world’s largest mass vaccination campaign on 16 January.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch the rollout of the drive at a total of 3,006 session sites virtually.
In the first phase, the country intends to vaccinate around 300 million people.
Earlier this month, the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) approved Covid-19 vaccines of Serum Institute of India (SII) and Bharat Biotech for restricted use in emergency situations.
Meanwhile, Brazil is sending an aircraft to India to carry the first two million Covid-19 vaccine doses supplied by SII. The Brazilian government’s Fiocruz biomedical institute secured the doses.
In a separate development, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Fast Track designation to Innovation Pharmaceuticals’ Brilacidin for the treatment of patients with Covid-19.
A Host Defense Protein (HDP) mimetic, Brilacidin has antiviral, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued a patent to MedTrace for their method of diagnosing the human heart via 15O-water PET. The patented method is the foundation of the company’s software aQuant, currently under development. Hendrik “Hans” Harms, PhD and Senior Scientist at MedTrace, and Jens Soerensen, Professor and Clinical Advisor to MedTrace, are the originators of the method.
Teresa Graham, currently head of global product strategy for Roche pharma, will become the division’s new CEO next month, Roche said Thursday. Simultaneously, Roche is elevating Levi Garraway, chief medical officer, to the executive committee.
Fierce Pharma has obtained internal documents and video of a town hall meeting conducted this week describing what J&J called a “comprehensive review” of its portfolio. Moving forward, J&J plans to operate its vaccines and infectious diseases outfits as one group, the executives explained.