- Tata is likely to join hands with the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR) to conduct clinical trials of Moderna vaccine in India
- Late-stage study data in November showed that Moderna was 94.1 percent effective without significant health concerns
- In comparison to the Pfizer vaccine, which must be kept at or below minus 70 degrees Celsius, Moderna vaccine can be stored in the fridge at normal temperatures
The Tata Group’s healthcare subsidiary, Tata Medical and Diagnostics, is reportedly in early talks with Moderna, an American biotechnology firm, to introduce an anti-coronavirus vaccine in India. It is worth noting that the Tata Group launched a Covid-19 test kit in November last year, giving results in less than an hour and as accurate as the RT-PCR method. India launched the world’s biggest immunisation drive to get the pandemic under control on January 16.
In order to conduct clinical trials of Moderna’s vaccine candidate in India, officials with knowledge of the matter told one of the leading news channels of the country, Tata is likely to join hands with the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR), India’s premier research organization.
Unnamed officials were quoted by one of the leading news channels as saying that initial discussions have begun between Tata Medical & Diagnostics and Moderna, and any clear plans will be finalized once the Centre gives the green signal to the involvement of the private sector.
In June 2020, Tata Medical & Diagnostics was founded in the midst of the coronavirus crisis by the Mumbai-based coffee-to-cars conglomerate and is ready to join the country’s Covid-19-led health requirements in the space of devices and formulations.
A top group told the publication, “The requirement for vaccines in India will be huge and the Tata Group has a strong brand equity in the country to gain people’s trust and confidence by adopting the approved guidelines for vaccines.”
Unlike the Pfizer vaccine, which must be kept at or below minus 70 degrees Celsius, Moderna’s can be stored at normal temperatures in the fridge, making it more suitable for poorer countries such as India, where there are minimal cold chains.
Data released from the late-stage analysis of Moderna in November showed that it was 94.1 percent effective without significant safety concerns. In December the shot was approved in the US for the and in Europe earlier this month.
India mandates that if it has to be considered for what the nation calls the world’s largest vaccination program, every vaccine manufacturer must perform an additional local study.
It gave emergency-use approval to a vaccine developed by Bharat Biotech and the state-run Indian Council of Medical Research and another approved one from Oxford University and AstraZeneca which is being produced by Adar Poonawalla’s Serum Institute of India.
After the United States, India has the world’s second highest COVID-19 caseload, but after reaching a peak in September, daily cases have declined.
The overall efficacy of the AstraZeneca vaccine, locally branded COVISHIELD, was 70.42% based on studies performed overseas, India’s drug controller said, but because of the lack of efficacy evidence, the approval of Bharat Biotech’s COVAXIN has faced criticism.