Serum Institute Ties Up With Gates Foundation For 100 Million Vaccine Doses

The funding will support at-risk manufacturing by SII for candidate vaccines from AstraZeneca and Novavax, which will be available for procurement if they are successful in attaining full licensure and WHO prequalification.

Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII) has entered into a new partnership with Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to make 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses for India and other emerging economies as early as 2021.

“The funding will support at-risk manufacturing by SII for candidate vaccines from AstraZeneca and Novavax, which will be available for procurement if they are successful in attaining full licensure and WHO prequalification,” SII stated.

“I would like to thank @BillGates, @gatesfoundation and @GaviSeth for this key partnership of risk sharing and manufacturing of a 100 million doses, which will also ensure equitable access at an affordable price to many countries around the world,” Adar Poonawalla, CEO and Owner, Serum Institute of India tweeted on Friday.

The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) had earlier granted permission to the Serum Institute to conduct phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials on the potential vaccine for the viral infection.

Earlier, India’s top drug regulator– Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) granted permission to SII to conduct phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials in India on the potential Covid19 vaccine, a senior government official said.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, via its Strategic Investment Fund, will provide at-risk funding of USD 150 million to Gavi, which will then be utilized to support the Serum Institute to manufacture the potential vaccine candidate. The potential Covid-19 vaccine manufactured by SII is likely to be made available to at least 92 countries.

GAVI, backed by the Gates Foundation, is a public-private global health partnership with the goal of increasing access to immunization in poor countries.

It co-leads COVAX – a scheme designed to guarantee fast and equitable access globally to COVID-19 vaccines – along with the World Health Organization and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI).

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