The race towards finding a vaccine against Covid-19 intensifies by the day. Meanwhile, the question remains when the world will get the much-awaited antidote to the deadly contagion.
Last week, in an interview to an American broadcaster, top US expert Anthony Fauci said that he believes the vaccine should be out by the end of this year or the beginning of next year. Fauci said that even half an effective vaccine would be enough to get the pandemic in control by the end of 2021.
Here are the key developments in the quest to developing the Covid-19 vaccine:
- The Russians who registered the first coronavirus vaccine in the world are keen on producing their candidate Sputnik V in India. India is already a key player in the vaccine manufacturing space.
- Australia has secured access to a “promising” coronavirus vaccine, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced Tuesday. This comes as Australia recently sealed a deal with Swedish-British pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca to receive the Covid-19 vaccine it is developing with Oxford University. Morrison said that country would manufacture it and offer free doses to the entire population.
- State-owned Chinese pharmaceutical company SinoPharm said its Covid-19 vaccine will be commercially available by the end of the year. Liu Jingzhen, the chairman of the company, told a Chinese daily that the vaccine would cost less than 1,000 yuan ($140). Jingzhen also said that the vaccine would be administered in two shots in a gap of 28 days.
- Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine candidate could be the first to be available to the Indian population if it gets the required clearances by the end of this year. Pune-based vaccine manufacturer Serum Institute of India (SII) has already received a nod from for India’s top drug regulatory body for conducting phase-II and III clinical trials on the Oxford Covid-19 vaccine.
- American biotechnology company Moderna, which is the first company in the United States to conduct a Phase III clinical trial of the potential Covid-19 vaccine, is aiming to enrol 30,000 volunteers for its trial, a CNN report stated.