Serum Institute of India (SII) will start production of Sputnik vaccine at the company's facilities in September, Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) said on Tuesday. "The first batch of Sputnik vaccine is expected to be produced at SII's facilities in September," RDIF said in a statement. The parties intend to produce over 300 million doses of the vaccine in India per year, it added.
"As part of the technical transfer process, SII has already received cell and vector samples from the Gamaleya Center. With their import approved by the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI), the cultivation process has begun," RDIF said.
RDIF had earlier tied up with a number of pharmaceutical companies in India (Gland Pharma, Hetero Biopharma, Panacea Biotec, Stelis Biopharma, Virchow Biotech and Morepen) for production of the Russian vaccine. The Russian Sputnik V vaccine has been registered in 67 countries globally with a total population of over 3.5 billion people.
â€śRDIF is delighted to cooperate with Serum Institute of India, the worldâ€™s largest vaccine manufacturer. This strategic partnership is a major step to substantially increase our production capabilities demonstrating a perfect example of joining forces and expertise to save lives both in India and around the world,â€ť said Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund
Adar Poonawalla, CEO of Serum Institute of India, said, â€śWe hope to make millions of doses in the coming months with trial batches starting in the month of September. With high efficacy and a good safety profile, it is critical that the Sputnik vaccine is accessible in full measure for people across India and the world. Given the uncertainty of the virus, it is important for international institutes, and governments to collaborate and further bolster up our fight against the pandemic.â€ť
Currently, the Sputnik V vaccine is being distributed by Hyderabad-based Dr Reddyâ€™s Laboratories and has been soft launched in 50 cities in India.