Earlier this year, as the Zika outbreak exploded around the globe sending companies into the R&D fray to develop a vaccination. Zika is spread mostly by the bite of an infected mosquito and can be passed from a pregnant woman to her fetus. Infection during pregnancy can cause certain birth defects such as, unusually small heads and brain damage in newborns called microcephaly as well as blindness, deafness, seizures. Biotech companies have been working tirelessly to obtain a vaccine to stop the spread of this terrible virus. It looks like we might have a front-runner as India’s Bharat Biotech says they are ready to start testing its Zika shot in humans.
Here are the facts:
Bharat Biotech has finished preclinical work on Zikavac.
Zikavac, an inactivated shot that Bharat believes could win fast-track support from authorities, and is awaiting a government nod to proceed, according to Livemint.
Analysts estimate a Zika vaccine could be a $1 billion opportunity, or more, because travelers would be willing to pay a high price for protection.
Bharat’s proposed Phase I trial will test the vaccine in about 100 participants.