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State varsities join hands to develop vaccine, clinical trials to begin soon
Tamil Nadu Dr MGR Medical University (TNMMU) after seeking the technical expertise of Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (TANUVAS) are now working together in the process of setting up protocol measures required for developing a vaccine candidate for coronavirus.
“The pre-clinical trials using animals will begin in a few weeks,” Dr Sudha Seshayyan, Vice-Chancellor of TNMMU told DT Next. “It has been decided to take up animal cell research. We will introduce the virus looking out for vaccine candidates to develop antiviral using two or three models. The first step is to study the impact of the virus when introduced into the host, professor Seshayyan explained adding that it will take seven to eight months for the maiden study to yield results.
Subsequently, TNMMU has also commenced its study of Siddha on coronavirus infected patients. The State has a history of giving Nilavembu Kudineer for dengue patients and now Kabasura Kudineer is given for COVID-19 patients. “We are tracking response from patients and the components of herbal drinks have shown efficiency in treating COVID-19. The preliminary treatment results by combining Siddha and Allopathy are encouraging and more research will be conducted,” the Vice-Chancellor said.
The medical university has reached out to the TANUVAS and our experts in zoonotic infections will coordinate with them, said C Balachandran, Vice-Chancellor of TANUVAS. “Advanced lab for zoonotic research and vaccination centre has the expertise to jointly work and we are positive about the project. Earlier, we had developed several animal-related vaccines, but this is the first project to deal with human type vaccine. We are jointly working with good hope,” he added.