Moderna has requested approval for its Covid vaccine in India and Mumbai-based pharma major Cipla has applied for permission to import and sell it in the country, according to sources.
Moderna expects clearance from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) soon, sources say.
Cipla, in its application to the drug regulator, refers to a recent move to waive bridging trials for foreign vaccines if it is cleared for emergency use in countries like the US and if the safety assessment data of the first 100 beneficiaries is submitted before mass rollout.
Moderna has also said the US government has agreed to donate a certain number of doses of its vaccine through COVAX to India.
Moderna is said to be 90 per cent effective against Covid.
Like Pfizer, Moderna is an mRNA vaccine that has fragments of the genetic material known as messenger RNA.
The vaccine works by giving cells temporary instructions to make the coronavirus spike protein. The protein is found on the surface of the COVID-19 virus.
Recently, Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla had said that the company’s vaccine may soon be available in India as the process of its approval is in the “final stages”.
“Pfizer is now in the final stages to get approval for COVID-19 vaccine in India. I hope very soon we will finalise an agreement with the government,” Mr Bourla had said.
The rollout of foreign vaccines has been stalled over their condition that India waives indemnity from liability in case of an adverse effect.