CHENNAI: The first phase of human clinical trials of the indigenous Covid-19 vaccine, called Covaxin, began in SRM Medical College Hospital and Research Centre in Chennai on Thursday.
Dr Satyajit Mohapatra, who is the principal investigator for the clinical trials at the hospital, confirmed the commencement of the human trials.
SRM is one of the 12 institutions chosen by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) to conduct the trials for the vaccine developed by Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech in collaboration with ICMR and the National Institute of Virology.
Bharat Biotech, on its website, said “the vaccine received DCGI approval for phase-1 and 2 human clinical trials and the trials will commence across India from July 2020.”
Earlier this month, in a letter to the institutions, the ICMR it wanted to launch the vaccine for public use by August 15 and advised the institutions to fast track all clinical trial approvals and ensure that the subject enrolment was initiated no later than July 7.
SRM Research Centre was earlier involved in clinical trials for Rotavirus vaccine, administered for protection against rotavirus infections which causes severe diarrhoea, and Pentavalent vaccine, administered to protect children from five diseases including hepatitis B and diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus.