Though late, Pakistan has realized the importance of home production of COVID vaccine. Pakistan has already signed MoUs of manufacturing Chinese and Russian COVID vaccines inside the country. A few days back The Daily Nation reported the plans of formulating Pakistan’s own vaccine at UVAS, Lahore.
According to the details, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences Lahore will undertake this project. Prof. Tariq Yaqub along with experts of the Microbiology department of UVAS have started working on the project. The team had already presented the idea to the Prime Minister of Punjab, who gave a green signal to the researchers. A budget of Rs.100 million has been allocated by the Prime minister too.
Director UVAS said that they had all the necessary arrangements for its preparation. The team has sought a time period of six months to prepare the vaccine. The team is likely to make announcement within a month, in case of progress in the development process.
In a high level meeting at the department of livestock, Punjab, the head of Microbiology department, UVAS Lahore, Dr. Tariq Yaqub presented a detailed road map of the preparation process of COVID Vaccine. He said that in the initial stages the vaccine will be tested on animals within six months. Later, in the second stage the vaccine will undergo pre clinical and clinical trials with the health department. The effects of vaccine will be noted and analyzed in human system. In the last stage, the vaccine will be sent to the drug regularity authority of Pakistan (DRAP) for approval.
Experts also talked in detail about the structure of the virus. Dr. yaqub said that the virus in question has the ability to change its structure and therefore poses a great challenge in the form of formulating an effective vaccine against it. According to Dr. Yaqub the university is capable of preparing one million doses of the vaccine, monthly.
Bashir Ahmad is a medical student working as a freelance writer, graphic designer and social media manager for Pakscience, Scientia Pakistan and many other platforms. Tap on the social media links below to connect with him.