Bharat Biotech To Get 19 Million Aid Dollar Development Of Variant Proof Covid-19 Vaccine CEPI

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New Delhi: The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) will support Bharat Biotech International, The University of Sydney and Switzerland’s Excelgene SA with $193 million (about Rs 149 crore) to develop an effective vaccine for all forms of the Covid-19 pandemic. CEPI will provide this funding as part of its $200 million campaign to provide protection against the SARS-CoV-2 variant and other beta coronaviruses aimed at promoting the development of anti-Covid vaccines. CEPI will provide financial assistance to researchers to conduct activities including immunogen design, preclinical studies, development of manufacturing processes and phase I clinical training.

“As repeated waves of COVID-19 infection remind us, we will be living alongside the virus for many years to come. The threat of a new variant emerging that might evade the protection of our current vaccines is real, so investing in R&D for variant-proof SARS-CoV-2 vaccines is a global health security imperative,” CEPI CEO Richard Hatchett said.

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He further said: “Our partnership with Bharat Biotech, University of Sydney and ExcellGene will advance the development of a vaccine candidate to protect against future variants of COVID-19, potentially contributing to the long-term control of the virus.” Bharat Biotech Chairman and Managing Director Krishna Ella said while the current vaccines are safe and effective against presently known variants, it is imperative that there is a focus on innovation for multi-epitope vaccines, where a single vaccine can protect against all future variants.

“Our expertise in product development and innovation, especially with novel adjuvants and platform technologies will add to the strong partnership with CEPI, ExcellGene, and the University of Sydney,” he added.

(With PTI inputs)

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