Tag Archives: #CoronaviursVaccine

What Will Kill First?

Businesses have been suffering and reeling under the impact of the lockdown enforced due to the Corona Pandemic. Although the Indian Government has announced a 20 lakh crore stimulus package for the Indian economy, the small businesses and the daily wage earners continue to struggle. The majority are left questioning as to what will kill them first, the Coronavirus or hunger?

People are being laid off jobs continually. Businesses are closing down. The underprivileged without savings have been left relying on the substandard government rations and subsidies. The middle class continue to suffer a lot as they are neither eligible for the rations yet they continue to be laid off their jobs. People who are testing positive for corona and recovering are being treated as a social outcast and are being asked to stay away from the office. The economy is stuttering with a record low growth. People in the private sector are being to asked to do the usual job at a fraction of their earlier salary to help the company to recover the losses the company has suffered. Even though the markets are slowly opening up, the customers are staying away from the fear of contracting the deadly virus. The popular markets and malls are recording the lowest footfall they have ever seen.

People are dying and some are traumatised having to stay put in their house month after month. Depression and anxiety are becoming alarmingly common in society. People are only buying essential commodities and luxury items are being shunned. With low and uncertain streams of income, people have stuck to only buying daily essential commodities. The stock market has gone for a toss with record low Sensex and the share price of companies plummeting. The tour and travel industry have been suffocating and will continue to suffer for the years to come. It will take all the industries a lot of time to return back to normalcy.

The educational institutions have been rendered moot with all of them shut with no classes in their institutions possible. The exams are being cancelled and the students and their guardians are finding it extremely difficult to pay off the monthly fees. Some institutions like Don Bosco Liluah, St.John school based in Howrah, a city in West Bengal have made relaxation in the fees structure to assist the parents in this time of financial crisis.  However, the schools are suffering from a paucity of funds. The corona crisis has led to a financial emergency in almost all of the sectors in the country.

No one knows how long it will take for the world economy to recover even if a vaccine for Covid-19 is made available. The devastating impact of Corona has led to the loss of lives, daily livelihood and scarred the 21st-century human civilization for life. The daily wage earners and the migrant labourers are suffering a lot. Some have already lost their lives due to hunger and some have lost their lives in the process of having to travel back to their villages.

Everyone is hoping for the nightmare to end soon and for the world economy to get back on its feet and keep moving ahead. Some people keep stressing on the fact that they would rather die from the virus than die of hunger. Thus they continue to risk their lives of travelling for their jobs to earn their daily bread. The pitiable condition of India is only
deteriorating daily with India climbing to the 4th position in the list of Covid-19 positive cases. As Rahul Gandhi rightly pointed out, India is on its way to winning the “wrong race”.










Johnson & Johnson to start human trails for covid-19 vaccine in july

Johnson & Johnson has decided to move up it’s clinical trials by two months, from September to July, says the company as the pharmaceutical giant , like many others expects to be the first, in the race of creating ‘the’ vaccine,i.e COVID -19 vaccine.

The speeding up of the process will allow J&J to participate in the U.S. government’s proposed major clinical trials project which targets to provide an successful vaccine by the end of the year. In March, J&J signed agreements with the U.S. government to build adequate production resources to manufacture more than 1 billion doses of its vaccine by 2021, even before it has confirmation that the vaccine will be effective.

There are currently no recognized medications or vaccines approved for the virus in the USA. A vaccination is seen as necessary to end the pandemic that has affected more than 7.2 million people and killed more than 412,000 people across the globe and has also had an adverse affect on the several economies around the world .

“Based on the strength of the pre-clinical data we have seen so far and interactions with the regulatory authorities, we have been able to further accelerate the clinical development,”Chief Scientific Officer Paul Stoffels of J&J said in a statement on Wednesday.

The trails by J&J will test the vaccine for safe operation and early signs of effectiveness in 1,045 healthy volunteers aged 18 to 55, and in those aged 65 and older. The trial will take place in the United States and Belgium.

The firm is also in discussions with the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) to begin bigger, late-stage studies before time, based on early research outcomes and regulatory clearance.

The United States plans to study a number of participants for the coronavirus vaccine in studies that would involve up to 30,000 people and get a potency result as soon as possible.  Health Chief of National Institutes Dr Francis Collins said.

Stoffels said last week that J&J hopes to have results of its vaccine efficacy trials in the first quarter of 2021. He added that the company is “working hard to bring it back to the end of the year.” A lot will depend on how much virus is circulating at that time, he said.

The company plans to test the vaccine in high-transmission regions within the United States. If the incidence is low, “we will complement that with international sites to make sure that we reach enough endpoints quickly to prove the vaccine works,” Stoffels said.

Moderna Inc, which is working in close partnership with NIAID, has started testing its vaccine candidate in a 600-subject mid-stage trial. The company expects to begin late-stage trials in July.

Moderna’s vaccine uses messenger RNA technology, an approach that has yet to produce any approved vaccines. J&J is utilizing the same technology used to make its Ebola vaccine, which won European regulatory approval late last month.

The trick with developing a vaccine is that it has to be widely tested and developed in a format that is effective on everyone and thus, can be mass-produced , so that the vaccine is profitable for the company manufacturing it too.

There are about 10 coronavirus vaccines in human testing. Experts have said a safe and effective vaccine could take at least 12 to 18 months from the start of development, which would shave several years off the typical vaccine development timeline.

Source:https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-johnson-johnson/jj-to-begin-human-trials-of-covid-19-vaccine-in-second-half-of-july-idUSKBN23H24F?utm_campaign=fullarticle&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=inshorts

world’s largest vaccine manufacturer invests usd 100 million to develop potential Covid-19 vaccine

According to a company official of , the world’s largest producer of vaccines, the Serum Institute of India , is planning to invest USD 100 million on a potential vaccine for COVID-19,  being developed at Oxford University. The organization established in Pune, has collaborated with AstraZeneca, a British bio-pharmaceutical corporation mammoth, to ensure a stable supply to India and other low- and middle-income countries of the AZD1222 vaccines.

“Our manufacturing facility is ready and we plan to start production in two months. We are spending more than USD 100 million for this facility. Till the trials are completed successfully for safety and efficacy, vaccines will not be distributed either in India or anywhere else in the world,” Adar Poonawalla, Chief Executive Officer, Serum Institute of India (SII), said.

With high hopes the company is planning to mass produce up to a million units, and is planning to stockpile the same at personal risk. According to the company when it comes to determine how many units India is likely to get in the first phase, they commented that it might be too early too comment. “However, if the vaccine trials succeed, India will gain access to the doses as it will also be the requirement of the Government of India. And we are certain that everybody will respect if the substantial volumes go to India,” he added.

According to their website, Serum Institute of India was founded in 1966 by Dr. Cyrus Poonawalla with the aim of manufacturing life-saving immuno-biologicals, which were in shortage in the country and imported at high prices. Thereafter, several life-saving biologicals were manufactured at prices affordable, and now is the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally (more than 1.5 billion doses) which includes Polio vaccine as well as Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hib, BCG, r-Hepatitis B, Measles, Mumps and Rubella vaccines. It is estimated that about 65% of the children in the world receive at least one vaccine manufactured by Serum Institute. Vaccines manufactured by the Serum Institute are accredited by the World Health Organization, Geneva and are being used in around 170 countries across the globe in their national immunization programs, saving millions of lives throughout the world.

Serum Institute of India is ranked as India’s No. 1 biotechnology company, manufacturing highly specialized life saving biologicals like vaccines using cutting edge genetic and cell based technologies, antisera and other medical specialties.

Serum Institute of India also has plans and is working on developing a vaccine with USA based firm Codagenix, Poonawalla recently said that at present, the firm is undergoing pre-clinical trials (animal trial phase) and hope to progress to the human trial phase by September/October.

“The aim is to make the vaccine over the next 1.5-2 years to help combat the novel corona-virus. With the combined efforts of our partner Codagenix, we are optimistic that we will be able to provide a viable and effective vaccine for mass use,” Adar Poonawalla, Chief Executive Officer, Serum Institute of India (SII), said.

SII along with Oxford and Codagenix is also working with an Austria-based firm, Themis and two other promising candidates to develop an effective and affordable vaccine for COVID-19.At least half a dozen attempts to build a coronavirus vaccine are underway worldwide but the ones in Oxford are considered one of the most assuring and promising ones.   A vaccine will be a much needed intervention that can bring the loss of lives caused by the infections, to a complete halt.

Source:https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/healthcare/biotech/pharmaceuticals/serum-institute-investing-usd-100-million-on-potential-covid-19-vaccine/articleshow/76288408