By Priyanka Sharma
New Delhi [India], August 20 (ANI): Russia, which became the first country in the world to give regulatory approval to COVID-19 vaccine, has expressed confidence in India's ability to mass produce `Sputnik V' and is looking for collaboration.
Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), said on Thursday that India is among countries with "extreme production capacities".
He said production of the vaccine is an important issue and they were looking for a partnership with Indian firms.
He expressed confidence that the partnership will be able to meet the demand for Sputnik V vaccine against COVID-19.
"We have conducted detailed research and we have analyzed capacities. Countries like India, Brazil, South Korea and Cuba have extreme production capacities. And we do see that any of these countries may become the international hub for the creation of our Sputnik V vaccine," he said at a virtual press conference attended by journalists from around the world.
"We look to Indian drug producers to co-partner as we believe India is capable of producing Gamaleya Institute vaccine and it is important to say that this partnership should produce a vaccine that enables us to cover the demand that we have received," he added.
He was replying to a query about plans for joint venture with Indian pharma companies for producing the vaccine.
Dmitriev said Russia has received one million requests for doses of its COVID-19 vaccine from different countries and it has a capacity of producing of 500 million doses a year.
"We believe our partnership with producers or manufacturers of our Sputnik V vaccine is going to be very important," he said.
Dmitriev said they get a lot of questions about the vaccine, including the platform on which it was developed.
"RDIF and the Gamaleya Institute strive for maximum transparency about the details of the vaccine development, which is why we post all information about adenovirus vaccines at sputnikvaccine.com," he said.
Russia has said that the first and second phase clinical trials of the vaccine were completed on August 1.
According to Russian researchers, Sputnik V is a human adenoviral vector vaccine that fights against coronavirus disease.
They said that next week more than 40,000 people in 45 medical centres will participate in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled multicenter clinical study of the efficacy, immunogenicity and safety of the Sputnik V vaccine which will begin in Russia simultaneously with the vaccination of volunteers from risk groups.
Researchers from Gamaleya National Institute have said that all the volunteers were feeling well and no unforeseen or unwanted side effects were observed.
They said that vaccine induced strong antibody and cellular immune response and not a single participant of the current clinical trials got infected with COVID-19 after being administered with the vaccine.
The researchers also said that the high efficacy of the vaccine was confirmed by high precision tests for antibodies in the blood serum of volunteers as well as the ability of the immune cells of the volunteers to activate in response to the spike S protein of the coronavirus, which indicates the formation of both antibody and cellular immune vaccine response.
Phase three clinical trial involving more than 2,000 people in Russia, UAE and Saudi Arabia and Brazil and Mexico started on August 12.
The vaccine received a registration certificate from the Russian Ministry of Health on August 11 and, under emergency rules adopted during the COVID-19 pandemic, can be used to vaccinate the population in Russia.
Mass production of the vaccine is expected to start in September 2020.
The count of COVID-19 cases in the world stands at over 22,256,000 and 782,456 people have died of the disease. (ANI)
By Priyanka Sharma