Serum Institute of India dispatches 40k doses of Ebola vaccine to Uganda
The Oxford team have been working on the vaccine for some time, including ongoing clinical trials in Oxford and Tanzania; the manufacture scale-up was led by the Serum Institute and supported by Prof Sandy Douglas, of the Jenner Institute
Oxford’s Ebola vaccine candidate has been shipped to Uganda, just 80 days after the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared a Sudan Ebola virus outbreak. The vaccine was manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII) which is working in close partnership with WHO.
The SII has dispatched 40,000 doses for trial in Uganda, a note by Pune-based vaccine manufacturer stated.
Adar Poonawalla, chief executive officer (CE) of Serum Institute of India, said, “To combat the widespread outbreak of the Sudan Ebola virus in Uganda, it is important to prioritise immunisation. The 40,000 vaccine doses manufactured in record time is a remarkable milestone in our long-standing association with Oxford University. I would also like to thank the Government of India for their constant support in enabling us to help people worldwide through effective, and accessible health interventions.”
Following the presentation of key data to the WHO generated in Oxford by Prof Lambe’s team, it was announced on November 17 that the vaccine had been recommended for inclusion in a ring vaccination trial to combat a Sudan Ebola virus outbreak in Uganda. The WHO working in partnership with the Ugandan government and the Ministry of Health have enabled the ring vaccination trial as part of a multi-faceted effort to curb the outbreak and save lives.
The Oxford team have been working on the vaccine for some time, including ongoing clinical trials in Oxford and Tanzania; the manufacture scale-up was led by the Serum Institute and supported by Prof Sandy Douglas, of the Jenner Institute. This research was funded by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC). SII (Serum Institute of India), which also partnered with the University to manufacture the Covid vaccine, produced 40,000 doses for the trial in just a few weeks.
Teresa Lambe OBE, professor of Vaccinology and Immunology at the Oxford Vaccine Group, said that this is a phenomenal feat by all involved, especially our partners Serum Institute.
“This exceptional partnership has demonstrated yet again the importance of academics working with large-scale manufacturers to rapidly pivot and respond to outbreaks, and the importance of working with and having the full support of WHO. Importantly, the speed at which we responded, gives real hope to achieve the 100-day mission and tackle deadly diseases of global impact,” said Lambe.