IMMUVAC , VPM1002: India’s 1st large-scale trial of two new TB vaccines launched

Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) launched India’s first large-scale trial for two new tuberculosis (TB) vaccines named IMMUVAC and VPM1002. These vaccines aim to prevent infection (pre-exposure) or prevent primary progression or reactivation of latent TB infection (post-exposure), all of which have critical role to play in India’s big fight against TB. Both vaccines have been manufactured by Indian pharmaceutical companies.

About Vaccines

  • Immuvac: It is also known as mycobacterium indicus pranii (MIP). It has been manufactured by Ahmedabad based Cadila Pharmaceuticals,
  • VPM1002: It is manufactured by Pune based Serum Institute of India.

Need for new vaccines

At present Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine is widely used in routine Expanded Programme of Immunisation (EPI) across the world. However , this vaccine is over century  old and provides poor protection against pulmonary disease in adolescents and adults.

About Trial

This will be first large preventive TB vaccine trial in the country involving more than 12,000 healthy household contacts of newly diagnosed TB patients from across six states of India. These six states including Delhi, Maharashtra, Odisha, Telangana and Karnataka with two thousand participants have enrolled for these trials. Depending on the results, ICMR will give recommendations to Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

Tuberculosis (TB)

It is infectious disease which is caused by bacteria Mycobacterium tuberculosis (MTB).

Symptom: Early symptoms of TB include bad cough which may lasts for 3 weeks or even longer. It causes pain in chest and one might also end up coughing blood. It mainly affects lungs and can also infect other parts of body.

TB in India: As per Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s 2018 annual report of Central TB division, the incidence of TB in India was nearly 2.8 million annually and incidence of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR TB) was 1,47,000 per year. India has highest share of global TB burden, contributing to 27% of total global burden. The total number of deaths because of TB in India was 4,23,000 and with incidence of HIV-TB was 87,000 per year. In this background, in 2017, Central government had committed to eliminate TB from the country by 2025.




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