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Bharat Biotech's nasal vaccine for Covid-19 likely to be a game-changer. Here's why

In the summer of the year 2020, the chairman and managing director of India’s premier vaccine developing company, Bharat Biotech International Limited told the reporter that while efforts were on to develop an intramuscular vaccine against Covid-19, what he really would want to do is develop a vaccine that will be easy to administer like ‘polio drops’.

The analogy of polio drops drawn to a vaccine against Covid-19 at that point seemed like a tall order. However, a year later, that vision is coming close to reality and it has got the medical fraternity excited.

Dr Krishan Ella’s Bharat Biotech has started the process of screening potential clinical trial participants at four centres in India - Nagpur, Hyderabad, Patna and Chennai for their new nasal vaccine against Covid19.

The process of recruitment, sources say, will take two to three days and we can expect the trial to start by early next week. The number of subjects in the first phase of the nasal vaccine trial would be 125.

The product on trial is BBV154, a novel adenovirus vectored, intranasal vaccine.

As per Bharat Biotech’s website, “An intranasal vaccine stimulates a broad immune response neutralising IgG, mucosal IgA, and T cell responses and creates an immune response at the site of infection (in the nasal mucosa) essential for blocking both infection and transmission of Covid-19.”


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