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Indian Immunologicals hands over first lot of Covaxin drug substance to Bharat Biotech

New Delhi: Indian Immunologicals handed over the first batch of Covaxin drug substance to Bharat Biotech on Friday. To augment the capacity of covid-19 vaccine production in the country, the central government requested that Indian Immunologicals Ltd (IIL) and Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL) join hands in April 2021.

IIL, in a short period of time, performed several activities including the signing of 4 agreements with BBIL, repurposing its manufacturing facility in Hyderabad, procurement of key raw materials and consumables, equipment for the process, technology transfer, trials at R&D scale, training etc.

“These activities were all done at breakneck speed and production commenced in July 2021. The batches so produced at IIL’s manufacturing facility have been tested at BBIL and IIL and meets the quality specifications for the drug substance. The yields are more than expected," the company said in a statement.

Dr K. Anand Kumar, MD, IIL handed over the first lot of Covaxin Drug Substance to Dr Krishna Ella, CMD, Bharat Biotech on Friday.

“The government has worked relentlessly to provide all possible support for ramping up Covaxin production in the country and speed up Covaxin inoculation drive. The loan license agreement by Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) for Indian Immunologicals Ltd to produce Covaxin Drug Substance is a major milestone, achieved in a very short span of time," said Dr Renu Swarup, secretary, DBT and chairperson, Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council.

The DBT-BIRAC support under Mission Covid Suraksha aims to meet the covid-19 vaccine requirement of our country, she said.

Under Atmanirbhar Bharat 3.0 Mission, Covid Suraksha was announced by the Government of India, to accelerate the development and production of indigenous covid vaccines. This is being implemented by the Department of Biotechnology. The Indian Immunologicals Limited (IIL), Hyderabad has been sanctioned a grant of ?60 crore towards enhancing production capabilities.

“IIL is also working on another covid -19 vaccine and the animal trials are underway currently, and is expected to come out by next year for human vaccination," said Dr K Anand Kumar, MD, IIL.

To augment the capacity of covid-19 vaccine production in the country, the central government requested that Indian Immunologicals Ltd (IIL) and Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL) join hands in April 2021.

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