Dengue vaccines in India: A look at the ongoing trials and development

Source: The post is based on the article “Dengue vaccines in India: A look at the ongoing trials and development”  published in Indian Express  on 28th August 2023

What is the News?

Several efforts are ongoing in India to develop an effective vaccine against the Dengue.

What is Dengue?

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Dengue cases in India:

Dengue in India has spread from just eight states and union territories in 2001 to all states by 2022.

There have been 31,464 cases and 36 deaths due to dengue reported across the country till the end of July this year, as per the latest available data.

There are several efforts ongoing within the country to develop an effective vaccine against the mosquito-borne disease that can lead to internal bleeding, circulatory shock, and death.

Challenges in developing dengue vaccine: Dengue virus comes in four varieties known as serotypes.

– Due to this, one of the main challenges of developing a dengue vaccine is antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE) — a person with low levels of antibodies against one serotype of dengue, may end up getting a more severe infection with another serotype of dengue. 

What are Dengue vaccines in the Human Trials stage in India?

Panacea Biotec’s Vaccine: The vaccine is based on live weakened versions of all four dengue serotypes.It has been developed by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in the United States.It has shown promise in phase I/II trials in adults and is moving toward a larger phase III trial.

Serum Institute of India’s Vaccine: It also uses weakened virus strains from the United States. Phase I trials have been completed and plans for phase II and large-scale studies in children are in progress.

Indian Immunologicals Limited’s Vaccine: It also uses the same weakened virus technology.It has started phase I clinical trials in adults.

What are the two indigenous dengue vaccines in early development stages?

ICGEB’s Vaccine: This vaccine utilizes specific parts of the dengue virus envelope protein to create Virus-Like Particles. It has shown promising results in animal tests and is yet to be tested in humans.

Tata Institute of Fundamental Research’s Vaccine: It is a DNA vaccine that incorporates all four serotypes.It is currently undergoing optimization and testing in mice.

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