Zydus Cadila Launches Research Programme To Develop Coronavirus Vaccine
A man wearing a protective mask uses a smartphone while sitting on a motorcycle at night in Shanghai, China. (Photographer: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg)

Zydus Cadila Launches Research Programme To Develop Coronavirus Vaccine

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Zydus Cadila has initiated an accelerated research programme with multiple teams in India and Europe for developing a coronavirus vaccine, the Ahmedabad-based drugmaker said on Saturday.

The first approach deals with development of a DNA vaccine against the major viral membrane protein responsible for the cell entry of the novel coronavirus, now called COVID-19, the company said in a statement.

The plasm id DNA would be introduced into the host cells, where it would be translated into the viral protein and elicit a strong immune response mediated by the cellular and humoral arms of the human immune system, which play a vital role in protection from disease as well as viral clearance.

The second approach deals with development of a live attenuated recombinant measles virus vectored vaccine against COVID-19. The recombinant measles virus produced by reverse genetics would express codon-optimised proteins of the novel coronavirus and will induce long-term specific neutralizing antibodies, which will provide protection from the infection.

Also Read: Here’s What It’s Like to Survive the Coronavirus in Wuhan

"There is an urgent and pressing need to develop a safe and efficacious vaccine that can prevent the spread of this deadly virus. Our researchers are working to bring a speedy solution to this most devastating outbreak in recent times," Zydus Group Chairman Pankaj Patel said.

Also Read: Coronavirus Microscope Images Published by U.S. Researchers

The Novel Coronavirus outbreak, which started in December 2019, has so far infected over 67,000 people and has claimed more than 1,500 lives.

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