Bharat Biotech has begun chikungunya vaccine Phase I trial

The Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech has begun a Phase I human clinical trial of the indigenously developed chikungunya vaccine three months ago. The vaccine uses a killed virus. The Phase I trial will test mainly for safety and the ability of the vaccine to provoke an immune response in the body. The higher the immune response... Continue Reading →

Seventy-year journey of Zika virus

Zika is an arbovirus infection which occurs through the bite of several different species of Aedes mosquitoes, including the Aedes aegypti which is active during the day; it can also be transmitted sexually. The virus was first isolated from a rhesus monkey in Uganda in the Zika forest, near the western shore of Lake Victoria,... Continue Reading →

The big test for malaria vaccine RTS,S

Beginning next year, the World Health Organisation will begin pilot tests of the injectable malaria vaccine RTS,S (or Mosquirix) on 750,000 children aged 5-17 months in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi. The vaccine has been successfully put through a Phase III trial, in which the drug is tested for safety and efficacy. Any decision on wider... Continue Reading →

Zika vaccine Phase I trial to begin next month in India

Bharat Biotech International Ltd in Hyderabad will start a Phase I clinical trial of Zika virus vaccine (MR 766) in two centres in India next month. The inactivated  vaccine being tested in humans will be an African Zika virus strain. “We have already got the approval from DCGI [Drug Controller General of India] in March... Continue Reading →

Bharat Biotech’s Zika virus vaccine confers 100% protection in mice

The Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech’s killed (inactivated) Zika virus vaccine using an African strain (MR 766) has shown 100% efficacy against mortality and disease in animal studies. A ‘killed virus vaccine’ or ‘inactivated vaccine’ contains virus that has been grown in culture and then killed using physical or chemical processes. The whole virus was used for... Continue Reading →

TB vaccine trial on adults begins in June in India

In June this year, the Pune-based Serum Institute of India Pvt Limited will begin a Phase II/III vaccine trial for tuberculosis using a novel, recombinant BCG (bacillus Calmette-Guérin) vaccine. The double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomised trial will be carried out on 2,000 adults who have been successfully treated (and cured) for TB. While 1,000 adults will receive... Continue Reading →

India begins caged trials of GM mosquitoes to control dengue, chikungunya

Outdoor caged trials to demonstrate the efficiency of genetically modified mosquitoes to suppress wild female Aedes aegypti mosquito populations that causes dengue, chinkungunya and Zika were launched on January 23 in Dawalwadi, Badnapur in  Maharashtra's Jalna district. Based on the results of the caged trials, which use the Release of Insects carrying Dominant Lethal genes... Continue Reading →

Indian researchers enhance BCG vaccine efficacy using anti-leprosy drug

Indian researchers have been able to bring about more than 50-fold improvement in the efficacy of the commonly used TB vaccine — Bacillu Calmette Guerin (BCG) — by giving mice anti-leprosy drug (clofazimine) for a month along with a single dose of the vaccine. The duration of protection lasted till the end of the trial protocol... Continue Reading →

Indian researchers use a novel drug to inhibit skin cancer in mice

Researchers at the Pune-based National Centre for Cell Science (NCCS) have been successful in isolating cancer stem cells that cause skin cancer. They have also been able to demonstrate that a compound (Andrographolide) isolated and purified from a herb (Andrographis paniculata) that is found in India to be effective in inhibiting tumour growth — both... Continue Reading →

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