Till yesterday, Serum Institute of India and Bharat Biotech were competitors in the endeavour to roll out Coronavirus vaccines in the country. Today, they both have joined hands for the same.

A statement, jointly issued by SII CEO Adar Poonawalla and Bharat Biotech MD Dr Krishna Ella, the two companies informed that they would together develop, manufacture and supply the Covid-19 vaccines in India and around the world.

Reiterating that the need of the hour was to save as many lives and livelihoods as possible, the companies noted that it was their duty to ensure that a smooth rollout of vaccines.

Now that both vaccines have emergency use authorisation, SII and Bharat Biotech noted that the focus is now upon manufacturing, supply and distribution so as to ensure people receive efficacious vaccines.

The statement comes two days after the Drugs Controller General of India granted the two vaccines Emergency Use Authorisation based on the recommendations of the Subject Expert Committee of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation.

SII's Covishield is a Recombinant Chimpanzee Adenovirus vector vaccine that encodes the SARS-CoV-2 Spike (S) glycoprotein with technology transfer from AstraZeneca/Oxford University. 

The firm submitted safety, immunogenicity and efficacy data generated on 23,745 participants aged 18 years or older from overseas clinical studies. The overall vaccine efficacy was found to be 70.42%. 

Bharat Biotech's Covaxin is a Whole Virion Inactivated Corona Virus Vaccine produced in collaboration with the ICMR and NIV (Pune), from where they received the virus seed strains. 

This vaccine is developed on Vero cell platform, which has a well-established track record of safety and efficacy in the country & globally.