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Zydus Cadila launches research programme to develop vaccine for coronavirus

Pharmaceutical major Zydus Cadila on Saturday said it has initiated an accelerated research programme with multiple teams in India and Europe for developing a vaccine for coronavirus. 

PTI PTI
Ahmedabad Published on: February 15, 2020 18:40 IST
Zydus Cadila launches research programme to develop vaccine
Image Source : PTI

Zydus Cadila launches research programme to develop vaccine for coronavirus

Pharmaceutical major Zydus Cadila on Saturday said it has initiated an accelerated research programme with multiple teams in India and Europe for developing a vaccine for coronavirus. The first approach deals with the development of a DNA vaccine against the major viral membrane protein responsible for the cell entry of the novel coronavirus, now called COVID-19, the company said in a statement.

The plasmid DNA would be introduced into the host cells, where it would be translated into the viral protein and elicit a strong immune response mediated by the cellular and humoral arms of the human immune system, which play a vital role in protection from disease as well as viral clearance.

The second approach deals with the development of a live attenuated recombinant measles virus vectored vaccine against COVID-19. The recombinant measles virus (rMV) produced by reverse genetics would express codon-optimized proteins of the novel coronavirus and will induce long-term specific neutralizing antibodies, which will provide protection from the infection.

"There is an urgent and pressing need to develop a safe and efficacious vaccine that can prevent the spread of this deadly virus. Our researchers are working to bring a speedy solution to this most devastating outbreak in recent times," Zydus Group Chairman Pankaj R Patel said.

The Novel Coronavirus outbreak, which started in December 2019, has so far infected over 67,000 people and has claimed over 1,500 lives.

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