Hilleman Laboratories, a global research and development organization focused on delivering high-impact and affordable vaccines, announced that it has entered into a collaboration with Bharat Biotech International Ltd. (BBIL), a leading vaccine and biotechnology company in India for further development, manufacturing and commercialization of its next-generation Oral Cholera Vaccine, Hillchol®. This collaboration will strengthen the ability of both organizations towards prevention of Cholera through rapid and cost-effective deployment of vaccine doses in low and middle-income countries.
Cholera is an acute diarrheal infection causedby Vibrio Cholerae and has been responsible for seven pandemics till date. Cholera is a poverty-related disease, endemic in South Asia and Afri-ca, and is on the WHO priority list . Globally, Cholera accounts for ~2.8 million cases and an es-timated 95,000 deaths annually. In India, about 30% of the population – 375 million people – remain at risk. Deployment of oral Cholera vaccines (OCVs) are an essential public health com-ponent of comprehensive Choleraprevention and control, recommended by the WHO and anelement of its “EndCholera” initiative.
Hillchol® was designed at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden and subsequently developed by Hilleman Labs including demonstration of safety and immunogenicity in an age de-escalating Phase I/II clinical trial conducted in Bangladesh with the assistance of icddr,b and Incepta Vaccines Ltd. For further development of Hillchol®, Hilleman Labs has entered into a licensing and manufacturing agreement with BBIL, who will scale the manufacturing process to commercial stage and establish product specifications required for WHO pre-qualification.
Prof. Jan Holmgren, University of Gothenburg who along with his colleague Dr. Michael Lebens and their team invented the vaccine commented “Hillchol® contains a single recombinant Hikojima strain which expresses both Inaba and Ogawa antigens, resulting in a shorter and simpler manufacturing process as compared to licensed OCVs. Hillchol®will therefore be of great importance and value to help to meet the urgent demands from Cholera afflicted countries for much expanded oral Cholera vaccines manufacturing and supplies for the control of Cholera globally”
Speaking about the partnership, Dr. Davinder Gill, Chief Executive Officer, Hilleman Laborato-ries said, “Vaccines play a critical role in improving healthcare outcomes globally, and Hilleman Laboratories is honoured to work with Bharat Biotech, a leading vaccine manufacturer in India for development, and if licensed, eventual manufacturing and commercialization of our innovative oral Cholera vaccine Hillchol®. Availability of an affordable Cholera vaccine is particularly significant considering that more than 50 GAVI eligible countries have been categorized as Cholera-endemic. We hope this collaboration will provide an innovative vaccine solution which is both affordable and accessible.”
Dr. Krishna Ella, Chairman & Managing Director of Bharat Biotech International Limited, said, “We are delighted to lead the scale-up, development, manufacturing and commercialisation efforts for Hillchol®? with our collaboration marking an important step. Our capacity to deliver 50 million doses per year and the addition of a WHO pre-qualification of Hillchol®?in the future, will not only solve the demand uncertainty but aid in affordability thereby resulting in the wider use of such a vital oral Cholera vaccine worldwide.”
Dr. Gerd Zettlmeissl, Chairman, Hilleman Laboratories congratulated both partners on enter-ing into collaboration agreement to align efforts and said “By working together, we can move even closer to meeting the critical public health goal of reducing Cholera burden by 90% by 2030, a key objective of WHO End Cholera initiative”
ABOUT HILLEMAN LABORATORIES
Hilleman Laboratories was established as an equal joint venture by MSD and Wellcome Trust in 2009, located in New Delhi, India. Hilleman Laboratories is a global vaccine R & D organization committed to developing high impact, affordable vaccines for people in developing countries. Our translational research focuses on creating safe, affordable vaccines and delivery solutions that are highly effective and can be easily incorporated into immunization programs. Hilleman Lab’s focus is on transforming ideas into products and technologies through translational R&D and by building partnerships with vaccine manufacturers. To date, our emphasis has been largely on vaccines against infectious diseases (OCV, Shigella, ETEC and Meningitis) and innovative de-livery technologies for low and middle-income countries.For more information about our research innovations, visit www.hillemanlabs.org
ABOUT BHARAT BIOTECH
Bharat Biotech is a clone to clinic biotechnology company focused on innovative product devel-opment, global manufacturing capabilities and internationally recognised quality management systems.
Bharat Biotech has established an excellent track record of innovation with more than 110 global patents, a wide product portfolio of more than 15 products, registrations in more than 70 countries and multiple WHO Pre-qualifications.
Our commitment to global social innovation programs and public private partnerships resulted in the introduction of path breaking WHO pre-qualified vaccines BIO-POLIO ® ‘ROTAVAC®’ and ‘TypbarTCV®’ combatting polio, rotavirus infections & typhoid respectively.
We have increased access for governments and communities to safe, effective & affordable vaccines to avert life threatening diseases including Hepatitis B, Rabies, Japanese Encephalitis, H1N1, Polio as well as bio-therapeutics using recombinant epidermal growth factors in the treatment of diabetic foot ulcers and burns.
For more information about our continuing innovations, product portfolio and research pipe-line, visit www.bharatbiotech.com