The Serum Institute of India (SII) announced on Tuesday a partnership with the RDIF (Russian Direct Investment Fund) to produce over 300 million doses of the Russian Covid-19 vaccine Sputnik V in India.
The officials from RDIF informed that the first batch of Sputnik is expected to be produced at SII’s facilities in September. “The parties intend to produce over 300 million doses of the vaccine in India per year,” an official said.
The officials also informed that the SII has already received cell and vector samples from the Gamaleya Center as part of the technology transfer process.
“With their import approved by the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI), the cultivation process has begun,” they added.
Commenting on the development, Kirill Dmitriev, CEO, RDIF said that he expects the first batches of the vaccine to be produced in India in the coming months.
“RDIF is delighted to cooperate with Serum Institute of India, the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer. This strategic partnership is a major step to substantially increase our production capabilities demonstrating a perfect example of joining forces and expertise to save lives both in India and around the world,” he added.
Adar Poonawalla, CEO of Serum Institute of India, commented: “I am delighted to partner with RDIF to manufacture the Sputnik vaccine. We hope to make millions of doses in the coming months with trial batches starting in September. With high efficacy and a good safety profile, the Sputnik vaccine must be accessible in full measure for people across India and the world.”
India is the leading production hub for the production of the Sputnik vaccine. The RDIF has made agreements with several pharmaceutical companies in the country like Gland Pharma, Hetero Biopharma, Panacea Biotec, Stelis Biopharma, Virchow Biotech and Morepen for the production of the Russian vaccine.
Sputnik V has the efficacy of 97.6% based on the analysis of data on the coronavirus infection rate among those in Russia vaccinated with both components of Sputnik V from December 5, 2020, to March 31, 2021.
The Russian vaccine has been administered in 67 countries globally.