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Serum, Novavax to work on flu, malaria and booster Covid vaccines

According to Stanley C. Erck, president and chief executive officer of Novavax, the partnership with Indian vaccine manufacturer Serum Institute of India (SII) will continue, and the two parties will continue to work on vaccinations for the flu, malaria, and respiratory syncytial virus in infants.

Following the recent approval of the Nuvaxovid vaccine by the USFDA (known as Covovax in India), SII has become the first Indian vaccine maker to get access to the US market. The SII has already delivered over 3.5 million doses of the Novavax vaccine to the US. Additionally, the vaccine was being marketed to markets like Australia and Europe with strict regulations.

When Covid struck, Erck said that Novavax and Serum Institute were discussing a combined venture to produce flu vaccines while working on the malaria vaccine. They collaborated on the Covid-19 vaccine, which the US had approved, and after attaining this goal, they were looking to work together on more vaccines.

It was the first time an Indian business has been able to qualify, register, and dispatch its vaccinations to the US, according to Adar Poonawalla, CEO of SII. According to Poonawalla, “this opens the door to many more partnerships like the flu vaccine and malaria vaccine.” For the malaria vaccine, SII was using the Novavax adjuvant, Matrix-M, which would make their preparation superior to what is currently on the market. He believed he could register it and export it to the US.

While everyone talks about innovation, according to Poonawalla, most of the time it just sits on the shelf and never materialises. However, with the help of both the Indian and US governments, both parties were able to carry out their plan and advance the invention.

The US government and the Biden administration “supported and helped to get those raw materials in 2021 when we needed them and there was a global shortage,” he said.

The Covid-19 vaccine is here to stay, said Gregory Glenn, president of Novavax R&D, who oversaw the design and development of the vaccine. Glenn predicted that it would persist, keep evolving, and circumvent immunity. He claimed that the Serum-produced, differentiated Covid-19 vaccine has proven effective against a number of variations and elicited a strong immune response. According to Glenn, their vaccination would be effective against the strains present today, tomorrow, and yesterday. It was crucial to get booster shots because the virus was changing, therefore they applied to the USFDA for Emergency Use Authorization for their vaccine as boosters. Glenn hoped that the proposal would be given prompt consideration so that the US may benefit from the booster Novavax-Serum Institute vaccine made at Serum Institute. He claimed that their vaccines had already received booster dose approval from Japan and Australia.

To commemorate 75 years of bilateral ties between the US and India in the field of health, the Novavax team and a US delegation visited SII’s campus in Pune.

According to Patricia Lacina, Charge D’Affaires at the US Embassy, the US and India have previously collaborated on meningococcal, rotavirus, and influenza vaccinations. She stated that the current research was concentrated on dengue, chikungunya, and Covid-19. She stated that the QUAD vaccine cooperation was dedicated to increasing local production capabilities for secure and efficient vaccinations. This was done in collaboration with QUAD partners Japan and Australia.

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