Panacea Biotech, Serum Institute in polio vaccine tie-up

Panacea Biotec said it signed two long-term agreements with the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer, Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd, for manufacturing polio vaccines with a potential market size of $1.25 bln per year.

The vaccine will also protect against six other diseases — Diphtheria, Tetanus, Pertussis, Hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenza type B & Polio.

The company said it is the first fully liquid wP-IPV (Whole cell Pertussis Inactivated Polio Vaccine) based hexavalent vaccine in the world. It was developed by Panacea Biotec and is marketed in India under brand name EasySix.

Under the collaboration, Serum Institute of India will be entitled to manufacture & sell the vaccine developed & commercialized by Panacea Biotec.

Adar C. Poonawalla, CE.O. & Executive Director, Serum Institute of India, said, lilt is an historic deal where in two major vaccine Companies in India have come forward to join hands to address unmet needs of both Private & Public Market globally.

“With the convenience of ‘Six in one’ it has potential of over 250 million doses in next 3-4 years with a market size of over $1.25 Billion annually,” he said.

Besides, Panacea said Serum Institute of India will ensure supply of IPV (inactivated polio vaccine) bulk to Panacea Biotec, an important constituent of the Hexavalent vaccine, from its wholly owned subsidiary registered in The Netherlands having technology and having the expertise for making the IPV.

Only a handful of companies manufacture IPV.

Panacea said that both companies will work together to get this new, wP-IPV based Hexavalent Vaccine introduced in the National Immunization Program of Government of India and developing countries over the next two years.

They will work closely with key stakeholders including National Governments, World Health Organization (WHO), Global Alliance for Vaccines & Immunization (GAVI), Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and other United Nation Agencies, etc.

Besides the India program, there is also a Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), supported by the Global Alliance for Vaccine Initiative (GAVI).

The GAVI has allocated $430 Million till 2018 with an additional donor pledge of $23 Million for 2019.

At present GAVI is evaluating IPV under Vaccine Investment Strategy for Global Public Good, Panacea said.

“Global demand of IPV/ IPV containing vaccines is estimated to rise significantly from around 100 Million in the year 2020 till supply constraints remain, to 250-350 Million doses every year starting 2022 depending upon a two or three dose schedule,” the company said.

Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on Immunization in April 2017 has recommended at least 2 doses of IPV in the routine Immunization schedule of the countries post OPV (oral polio vaccine) withdrawal, it said.

“Here it is important to note that there has been a global supply constraint of IPV since early 2015 and only 52% of projected supply had been delivered to UN agencies as a result of which 18 Countries could not introduce IPV in their immunization and 15 had interruptions out of 70 IPV eligible countries approved for GAVI support,” it said.

Speaking on the occasion Dr Rajesh Jain, Joint Managing Director, Panacea Biotec said that millions of children in developing countries will get an easy access to a fully liquid Hexavalent vaccine containing six very important antigens.

It is estimated that around $20 billion has already been spent on trying to eradicate polio worldwide.

Panacea Biotec is one of the largest vaccine producers and Biotechnology Companies in India, while Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd. is now the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally (more than 1.3 billion doses).

It is estimated that about 65% of the children in the world receive at least one vaccine manufactured by Serum Institute.

Vaccines manufactured by the Serum Institute are accredited by the World Health Organization, Geneva and are being used in around 170 countries across the globe in their national immunization programs.