Bharat Biotech’s typhoid vaccine gets WHO nod
Typbar TCV is the world’s first typhoid vaccine clinically proven for use on recipients who can be as young as six months.health Updated: Jan 03, 2018 22:32 IST
Bharat Biotech’s typhoid vaccine Typbar TCV has received World health Organization’s prequalification, which allows health and humanitarian organisations such as UNICEF, GAVI and Pan-American Health Organization to procure it for public health vaccination programmes across the world.
Typbar TCV is the world’s first typhoid vaccine clinically proven for use on recipients who can be as young as six months. A single dose offers 87% protective efficacy against typhoid, which sickened 12 million people and killed 130,000 worldwide in 2016.
Though the vaccine is approved for use in India, it is not yet a part of India’s Universal Immunisation Programme. It’s retail price in India is Rs 1,500.
Typhoid fever is caused by food and water contaminated by Salmonella Typhi (S. Typhi) bacteria; the cost of treating it ranges from $50 to $ 5,000 for outpatient and inpatient treatments in developing nations.
WHO recommends the use of typhoid conjugate vaccines for use on children between the ages of 6 months and 23 months, and catch-up vaccinations for children between the ages of 2 years and 15 years. “This vaccine will be a game changer because the unavailability of an effective vaccine for young children has been one of the major barriers to controlling typhoid. With GAVI’s approval of US$ 85 million funding, the first introductions of the vaccine in GAVI-supported countries are expected as early as the first half of 2019,” said Dr Seth Berkley, CEO, GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance.
Drug-resistant “superbug” strains of S. Typhi have been reported from several countries in Africa and South Asia, including India, China, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal.
“Typhoid is hugely underdiagnosed and most people are not given appropriate treatment, leading to antimicrobial resistance (AMR).
“Since preventing typhoid will reduce disease and with it AMR, I think it’s an important vaccine in South Asia, where the burden of typhoid, and the AMR burden, are growing,” said Ramanan Laxminarayan, senior research scholar and lecturer at Princeton Environmental Institute.
Bharat Biotech has offered the vaccine at US $1.50 per dose for procurement for GAVI-supported countries. “Recognising the importance of sustained vaccine procurement for low-income and low-middle income countries, we have offered a further price reduction to around $ 1.0 or below/dose, post procurement of 100 million doses for lower and lower-middle income countries ,” said Dr Krishna Ella, Chairman and Managing Director of Bharat Biotech. Bharat Biotech has partnered with the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation and the US Centers for Disease Control to evaluate the effectiveness of Typbar TCV in Navi Mumbai using 100,000 doses, with an additional 300,000 doses at subsidised rates.