19 Mar 2021: Indian drugmaker to produce 200mn doses of Russia's Sputnik V
Stelis Biopharma, the biopharmaceutical arm of Bengaluru-based Strides Pharma Science, will be making and supplying at least 200 million doses of the Sputnik V vaccine, the Russian coronavirus vaccine currently awaiting emergency use approval in India.
This makes India one of the biggest producers of Sputnik V, outside of Russia.
Here are more details on this.
Details: Stelis to commence supplies later this year
For this deal, Stelis has partnered with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which backed the development of Sputnik V.
The company intends to commence supplies of the vaccine from the July-September quarter of 2021.
"Stelis will also continue to work with the RDIF to provide additional supply volumes beyond the initial agreement," the Russian fund has said.
Statement: Deal will 'widen access to vaccine on a global scale'
About the deal, Arun Kumar, founder of Strides Group, said, "We are delighted to partner with RDIF to make a substantial contribution toward providing global supply of the Sputnik V vaccine which is one of the most efficacious approved vaccines commercially available."
Significant volumes will be produced to help "widen access to the vaccine on a global scale," said Kirill Dmitriev of RDIF.
Details: India capable of making 550mn Sputnik V doses a year
Sputnik V, developed by Moscow's Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology, is said to have an efficacy of 91.6%.
The latest agreement is expected to increase India's capacity to make this vaccine to around 550 million doses per year.
Earlier, Hyderabad-based Gland Pharma had announced a similar partnership to produce up to 252 million doses of Sputnik V.
India: Sputnik V awaiting emergency use approval in India
Meanwhile, Dr. Reddy's Laboratories is also working with the RDIF to conduct domestic clinical trials of the Sputnik V vaccine.
It had also sought emergency use authorization last month but the Indian drug regulator asked it to furnish immunogenicity data.
India has so far approved two COVID-19 vaccines - Bharat Biotech-developed COVAXIN and Serum Institute of India-manufactured Covishield.