Haffkine Institute gets approval for BCG trial

Updated on May 04, 2020 11:30 AM IST
The institute in Mumbai’s Parel had submitted the proposal to the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) last month as a therapeutic treatment.(Burhaan Kinu/HT PHOTO)
The institute in Mumbai’s Parel had submitted the proposal to the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) last month as a therapeutic treatment.(Burhaan Kinu/HT PHOTO)
Hindustan Times, Mumbai | ByRupsa Chakraborty

The Haffkine Institute got permission to run clinical trials of the anti-tuberculosis Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine to treat Covid-19 patients. The trials will be conducted at BJ Medical College, Pune.

The institute in Mumbai’s Parel had submitted the proposal to the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) last month as a therapeutic treatment. “The vaccine helps to improve the immune system among people, so it is believed that it can be used as a therapeutic treatment for patients with Covid-19. Preliminary research has shown that it has helped to neutralise the virus to some extent,” said Dr. Sanjay Mukherjee, secretary, Medical Education and Drugs Department (MEDD).

Around 35 people with moderate and severe infection will be part of the trial.

Dr. Usha Padmanabhan who currently heads the Department of Cell Biology at Haffkine Institute will be in-charge of the trial. Dr Rajesh Deshmukh, managing director of the Institute said, “Unlike other new drugs, it would be easier to treat patients as this vaccine is already available in markets. We have already set up the laboratory for the trial at the college.”

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