The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has sanctioned a project to develop human monoclonal antibodies as a therapy for COVID-19. According to reports, the project is being led by leading vaccines and bio-therapeutics manufacturer Bharat Biotech. The CSIR has sanctioned it under its flagship New Millennium Indian Technology Leadership Initiative programme (NMITLI).
According to reports, the project aims at an alternate therapeutic regimen by generating highly effective and specific human monoclonal antibodies that are capable of neutralizing the Coronavirus. Speaking to the news agency, ANI, Bharat Biotech Chairman and Managing Director Dr Krishna Ella said that the purpose of vaccination is to protect the healthy against future infections and it alone may not provide the complete solution. "We feel the monoclonal antibody therapy will provide a viable option," he added.
According to Dr Ella, while Israel and the Netherlands have recently announced the development of virus-neutralizing antibodies, their approach is to develop a powerful cocktail of neutralizing antibodies that can also simultaneously block mutational variants of the virus. She stated that they are fast-tracking the development process of the antibodies. Further, he added that the antibodies will be made available within the next six months that will improve the COVID-19 treatment efficacy.
Institutes including National Centre for Cell Science (NCCS), Pune and Indian Institute of Technology, Indore and industry - PredOmix Technologies, Gurgaon have collaborated with Bharat Biotech for a public health emergency.
According to the latest update from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the number of total Coronavirus cases in the country has climbed to 56,342, including 37,916 active cases. While 1,886 deaths have been reported overall, around 16,540 people have been cured/discharged/migrated. Meanwhile, Maharashtra and Gujarat have the highest number of cases in the country with 17,974 and 7,012 cases respectively.
(With ANI Inputs)
Image Source: ANI