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The government advisory panel NTAGI on Tuesday is learnt to have recommended vaccination against cervical cancer and typhoid after examining the data in this regard. The separately constituted HPV working group of NTAGI had on June 8 reviewed the clinical trial data and the usefulness of Serum Institute's indigenously-developed and India's first Quadrivalent Human Papillomavirus vaccine (qHPV) against cervical cancer for inclusion in the National Immunization program, sources said.
According to official sources, the subject expert committee of Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) had on June 15 recommended granting market authorisation to the qHPV jab. The approval of the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) in the matter is still awaited.
Prakash Kumar Singh, director, government and regulatory affairs at Serum Institute of India (SII) had applied to DCGI seeking market authorisation of qHPV after the phase 2/3 clinical trial was completed with the support of the Department of Biotechnology to ensure its early availability in the country, sources said.
According to the application submitted to DCGI by Singh, qHPV vaccine CERVAVAC has demonstrated robust antibody response that is nearly 1,000 times higher than the baseline against all targeted HPV types and in all dose and age groups.
The application mentioned that lakhs of women are diagnosed every year with cervical cancer as well as few other cancers and the death ratio is also very high.
Cervical cancer in India ranks as the second most frequent cancer among women between 15 and 44 years of age.
Also, it is noteworthy that presently India is fully dependent on foreign manufacturers for the HPV vaccine.
Typhoid is a bacterial infection that can lead to high fever, diarrhoea and vomiting. It is caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhimurium (S. typhi). If not detected and treated early, it can be fatal.
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