With an aim to make up to 240 million doses per year, Cadila healthcare has announced that it has started producing its potential Covid-19 vaccine, emergency use authorization for which will be sought by it in May or June, its MD told Reuters.
The Government officials said they are eagerly waiting for Cadila to seek approval for ZyCov-D soon.
“We have just started producing doses,” Sharvil Patel said in a Microsoft Teams interview. “But it is not meaningfully large.”
He said the aim was to produce 10 million doses a month starting June, taking the in-house annual capacity to 120 million. The rest of the production, as required, will mainly come from third-party producers.
“We are already talking with two other manufacturers. We will slowly add more manufacturers,” Patel said.
Its DNA plasmid product – which involves the injection of a small part of the virus’s genetic code (DNA or RNA) to stimulate immune response in the recipient – is currently meant to be given in three doses but the company is also doing trials on a two-dose regimen, he said.
ZyCoV-D’s success is crucial for India, the country with the world’s biggest vaccine making capacity.
Patel said unlike some other drugmakers hit by US curbs on exports of vaccine raw material, Cadila was sourcing its ingredients domestically.
“We did anticipate those challenges,” he said. “Everything for us is done in India. Our supply chain is secure. We don’t have any issues for the next 14-15 months.”