Hyderabad: Even as the medical and pharmaceutical community is yet to find a vaccine for COVID-19, Hyderabad has a small reason to rejoice. Three pharmaceutical companies, all based in Hyderabad, are listed among the six Indian pharma companies that are currently developing a vaccine for the novel coronavirus.

The six companies which were listed out by Amitabh Kant, the CEO of Niti Aayog, in his tweet are: Zydus Cadila, Bharat Biotech, Indian Immunologicals Limited, Biological E.Limited, Serum Institute of India and Mynvax.

Out of these six companies, Bharat Biotech, Indian Immunologicals and Biological.E are based out of Hyderabad.



‘Hyderabad produces one-third of human vaccines for the world’

The presence of major pharma players like the aforesaid companies has led to Hyderabad being considered as the ‘vaccine hub of India’. In fact, a study by McKinsie, a U.S-based management consulting firm has found that Hyderabad contributes to one-third of the total number of vaccines produced across the world.

Shakti Nagappan, director of Life Sciences and Pharma for Telangana seconds this. “There are multiple reasons as to why Hyderabad appears top in the vaccine scenario in India. First, is the presence of reputed institutes, such as the CCMB, IICT has helped in the technical aspect for vaccine development. This, combined with skilled manpower and vision of extremely entrepreneurial people, has helped develop more than two billion vaccines from here alone,” he says.

Further, all these pharma companies are tied up with foreign stake-holders in vaccine development. “Bharat Biotech is tied up with a U.S-based university, while Indian Immunologicals is collaborating with an Australian university. In the case of Biological.E, multiple stake-holders are involved,” added Mr. Nagappan.

Bharat Biotech, headed by Krishnamurthy and Suchitra Ella, is a pharma company at Genome Valley, launched in 1996 and has produced vaccines for hepatitis-B, typhoid, rabies among many others. Indian Immunologicals is based in Jubilee Hills, and is known for its pediatric and rabies vaccines. Biological. E, based out of Azamabad and headed by Ippagunta Yasodhara Rama Krishna Rao and Mahima Datla has manufactured several immunisation vaccines as well as respiratory therapy products.

Amritha Mohan

Amritha Mohan is a reporter at the NewsMeter. Shortly after completing her Master's in Communication at the University of Hyderabad, she began teaching courses on media and culture as a guest lecturer at the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication, North-Eastern Hill University (NEHU), Shillong. Amritha has previously interned with news organisations such as Greater Kashmir and Newslaundry. A lover of travel and photography, she spends most of her time planning road trips to the North-East. Nothing makes her happier than a green turf and a team to play football with. She primarily reports on education, tech, human-interesting and critical features.

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