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Indian lab among 6 world institutes for COVID-19 vaccine testing

A health worker takes test tubes with plasma and blood samples at a Research Centre. File   | Photo Credit: Reuters

The Translational Health Science And Technology Institute (THSTI), an autonomous institute of the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), has been chosen by the international non-profit, Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), as one of the ‘Global network of Laboratories for centralized assessment of COVID-19 Vaccines’.

The CEPI network will initially involve six labs, one each in Canada, Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Bangladesh and India. All the labs would use the same reagents and follow a common set of protocols to measure the immune response of multiple vaccine candidates under development and trial. “This will greatly harmonise the vaccine trial process and allow different vaccine candidates to be compared and speed up the selection of the most effective candidate,” the DBT said in a statement on Monday,

The Ind-CEPI mission for the establishment of BSL-3 (Bio-safety level 3) facility, is a translational laboratory for platform technologies and a Bioassay laboratory for development of assays to measure clinical immunogenicity. The mandate of the bioassay laboratory at the THSTI is to provide validated assays for vaccine development on a par with global standards.

Dr. Renu Swarup, Secretary, DBT, said in a statement: “The DBT has been supporting efforts for COVID-19 vaccine development and testing. More than 30 vaccines are at different stages of development with three in human trials and nearly four in advanced stages of preclinical testing.”

Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan on Sunday said that according to current projections, about 25 crore Indians are likely to be vaccinated by July next. A vaccine is likely to be available by early next year, he added.

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Printable version | Dec 4, 2020 11:54:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/indian-lab-among-6-world-institutes-for-covid-19-vaccine-testing/article32775432.ece

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