6 Indian companies working on vaccine for COVID-19

Six Indian companies are working on a vaccine for COVID-19, joining global efforts to find a quick preventive for the deadly infection spreading rapidly across the world, says a top Indian scientist.

Nearly 70 vaccine candidates' are being tested and at least three have moved to the human clinical trial stage, but a vaccine for the novel coronavirus is unlikely to be ready for mass use before 2021.

As COVID-19 infects more than 1.9 million in the world and claims 1,26,000 lives, Indian scientists are also part of the global fight against the disease.

While Zydus Cadila is working on two vaccines, Serum Institute, Biological E, Bharat Biotech, Indian Immunologicals, and Mynvax are developing one vaccine each, Gagandeep Kang, Executive director of the Translational Health Science and Technology Institute, Faridabad, told.

Gagandeep is also vice chair of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), which noted in a recent study that the global vaccine R&D effort in response to the COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented in terms of scale and speed .

But it is a complicated process with many stages of testing and many challenges, explained experts. A vaccine for the new coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, may not take 10 years that other vaccines do but it could be at least a year before it is proven safe, effective, and made widely available, they said.