India formulates indigenous Japanese Encephalitis vaccine
India’s Bharat Biotech has developed world’s first vaccine against Japanese Encephalitis (JE) using an Indian strain of the virus.
It used JE virus collected from Kolar in Karnataka to develop the vaccine which will provide protection agains wider strains of the virus such as the Nakayama strain – the original strain from Japan, and the Biken strain that circulates in other Asian countries.
The vaccine has been found to have protection rate of over 90% and can be used on the 1-15 years age group.
India has just submitted the results from the final human trials to the drug controller general of India (DCGI) for marketing clearance.
Currently, India imports the vaccine (SA14) from China’s National Biotech Group. Even though the Chinese vaccine SA 14 was developed in 1990, scientists are concerned about its safe use as they say that the live attenuated virus in the Chinese vaccine could multiply in vector and recombine with local viruses resulting in creation of recombinant viruses with unknown characteristics.
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