COVID: Alumni Council to develop vaccine, eyes $95M funding

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(Our Bureau, June 3) The IIT Alumni Council is planning to develop and distribute a fourth-generation vaccine Covid-19 vaccine. It has sanctioned ₹300 crore ($41 million) from its Megafund initiative and is looking to raise ₹700 crore ($95 million) more from venture capital and private equity funds for producing 200 million doses, according to a press statement. “We are very hopeful of catalyzing the availability of a fourth-generation vaccine at much-reduced prices. We also expect to backward-integrate quickly so as to create a robust foundation for RNA-based prophylactics and therapeutics for a wide range of diseases,” said Ravi Sharma, President of IIT Alumni Council, a global body of students, alumni and faculty spread across all 23 IITs. This would the alumni body’s second attempt at developing a vaccine: Last year, it had pulled out of the vaccine development race as the approaches back then weren’t adequately backed by scientific data, patient research and clinical studies.

 

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