COVID-19: DCGI nod to Serum Institute of India for phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials of Oxford vaccine candidate

COVID-19: DCGI nod to Serum Institute of India for phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials of Oxford vaccine candidate

The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) has given nod to the Serum Institute of India (SII) for conducting phase 2 and 3 human clinical trials of a COVID-19 vaccine candidate, developed by the University of Oxford, in the country.

Government officials told JU that the approval for conducting phase 2 and 3 clinical trials by the SII was granted by DCGI Dr V G Somani late Sunday night after a thorough evaluation based on the recommendations of the Subject Expert Committee on COVID-19.

As a rapid regulatory response, the expert panel at the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) on Friday, after a detailed deliberation and considering the data generated on the vaccine candidate in phase 1 and 2 of the Oxford University trial, had recommended granting permission for phase 2 and 3 clinical trials of the potential vaccine, ”Covishield”, on healthy adults in India, the officials said.

“The firm has to submit safety data, evaluated by the Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB), to the CDSCO before proceeding to phase 3 clinical trials,” a senior official said.

“As per the study design, each subject will be administered two doses four weeks apart (first dose on day one and second dose on day 29) following which the safety and immunogenicity will be assessed at predefined intervals,” the official said.

Currently, phase 2 and 3 clinical trials of the Oxford vaccine candidate is going on in the United Kingdom, phase 3 clinical trial in Brazil and phase 1 and 2 clinical trials in South Africa.

The officials said that the SII had submitted a revised proposal on Wednesday after the expert panel on Tuesday, following deliberation over its application, had asked it to revise its protocol for the phase 2 and 3 clinical trials besides seeking some additional information.

The panel has also recommended that the clinical trial sites which have been proposed for the study be distributed across India.