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India-based Bharat Biotech inks deal for nasal COVID-19 vaccine

India-based Bharat Biotech inks deal for nasal COVID-19 vaccine
India-based Bharat Biotech inks deal for nasal COVID-19 vaccine

The US-based biotech startup Precision Virologics Inc. and Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech Limited have reportedly jointly gained the licensing rights to a new COVID-19 chimp-adenovirus vaccine from the Washington University of Medicine in St. Louis. Bharat Biotech is entitled, subject to regulatory approvals, to sell the nasal Coivid-19 vaccine in all markets except in the United States, Japan, and Europe. 

The intranasal vaccine candidate has demonstrated an incredible degree of safety during mouse trials, hence licensing agreements can contribute to quick clinical progress. Recently, Cell and Nature have released this technology and results. 

The National Institutes of Health is researching non-human primates focused on these extraordinary results. Phase I tests, one dose nasal, is planned for Saint Louis University's Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit. Bharat Biotech will perform clinical studies in India and massively produce the vaccine in its GMP facility in Genome Valley, India, after securing regulatory approvals.

Precision Virologics Interim CEO David T. Curiel commented on the event that achieving immunization with a single intranasal method offers a huge advantage in reaching broader audiences and with easy operations. He also added that this type of vaccination directly attacks the cells present in the nose and throat which most vaccines cannot achieve at present. 

While Dr. Krishna Ella, Chairman and Managing Director of Bharat Biotech were much proud of the collaboration. He said that this agreement adds to the current power and experience of the firm in ensuring safe, effective, and affordable vaccines. 

Bharat Biotech stated that not only would an intranasal vaccine be easy to operate but it would also eliminate medically used items like needles and syringes, which have a considerable effect on the total expense of a vaccination route. The firm aims to scale up the production to one billion doses, which means one billion individuals will be vaccinated under a single-dose regimen.

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