COVID-19: RDIF & Dr Reddy’s Laboratories to cooperate on clinical trials & distribution of Sputnik V vaccine

In a big development on the COVID-19 vaccine front, Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, and India-based global pharma major Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd have agreed to cooperate on clinical trials and distribution of Sputnik V vaccine in India.

Upon regulatory approval in India, RDIF shall supply 100 million doses of the vaccine to Dr. Reddy’s. Sputnik V vaccine, which is based on well-studied human adenoviral vector platform with proven safety, is undergoing clinical trials for the coronavirus pandemic.

Deliveries could potentially begin in late 2020 subject to completion of successful trials and registration of the vaccine by regulatory authorities in India.

The agreement between RDIF and Dr Reddy’s reflects the growing awareness of countries and organizations to have a diversified anti-COVID vaccine portfolio to protect their populations.

RDIF CEO Kirill Dmitriev said, “We are very pleased to partner with Dr Reddy’s in India. Dr Reddy’s has had a very well established and respected presence in Russia for over 25 years and is one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in India. India is amongst most severely impacted countries from COVID 19 and we believe our human adenovirusdual vector platform will provide a safe and scientifically validated option to India in the battle against COVID 19.”

He added, “RDIF partners will receive an effective and safe drug to fight the coronavirus. The platform of human adenoviral vectors, which is the core of the Russian vaccine, has been tested in more than 250 clinical studies over decades, and it has been found safe with no potential negative long-term consequences.”

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G V Prasad, Co-Chairman and Managing Director of Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories, said, We are pleased to partner with RDIF to bring the vaccine to India. The Phase I and II results have shown promise, and we will be conducting Phase-III trials in India to meet the requirements of the Indian regulators. Sputnik V vaccine could provide a credible option in our fight against COVID 19 in India.”

Prof Sergey Tsarenko, Deputy Chief Physician for Anesthesiology and Reanimation at Hospital No. 52 in Moscow, said, “The main criteria for evaluating a vaccine are safety and efficacy. In Sputnik V, safety is ensured by the use of human adenoviral vectors, which we repeatedly encounter throughout our lives. Efficacy is achieved by using two different human adenoviruses sequentially, which differentiates this platform.”

On August 11, the Sputnik V vaccine developed by Gamaleya National Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology was registered by the Ministry of Health of Russia and became the world’s first registered vaccine against COVID-19 based on the human adenoviral vectors platform.

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