Published: 19th November 2020
IISc researchers developing viable portent-based heat and cold resistant vaccine, clinical trials pending
It remains stable at 37 degrees Celsius for an up to a month, and freeze-dried dozes could tolerate temperatures as high as 100 degrees Celsius
Researchers at the Indian Institute of Science are developing a viable portent-based vaccine that can withstand hot and cold temperatures. Developed by the Molecular Biophysics Unit at IISc, the vaccine is yet to undergo clinical trials. It remains stable at 37 degrees Celsius for an up to a month, and freeze-dried dozes could tolerate temperatures as high as 100 degrees Celsius. This comes from the understanding that resource-poor regions will be unable to use vaccines that need refrigeration.
“Virtually all SARS-CoV-2 vaccines currently in clinical testing are stored in a refrigerated or frozen state prior to use,” researchers said in a study published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry.Unlike vaccines that target viral RNA, the researchers have mooted the less common idea of targeting viral protein. The team is looking for funds for clinical development, Raghavan Varadarajan, Professor at the Molecular Biophysics Unit, said in a release.
This would include safety and toxicity studies in rats along with process development and GMP manufacture of a clinical trial batch before it is tested in humans. “Those studies can cost about Rs 10 crore. Unless the government funds us, we might not be able to take it forward,” he added.