The Union health minister launches India’s first indigenous vaccine against pneumonia, developed by the Serum Institute of India (SII)
- According to the ministry, the newly launched vaccine would be sold under the name ‘Pneumosil’ and would be available either as a single dose in a vial and pre-filled syringe or as multidose in vials at affordable prices
- The pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) would be used to treat pneumonia in children and has been developed by SII in collaboration with other partners like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
- While mentioning about its trial, the Minister stated that Pneumosil has been extensively evaluated in 5 randomized controlled clinical trials and has demonstrated comparable safety and immunogenicity against licensed pneumococcal vaccines across diverse populations of India and Africa, where Pneumosil was administered to adults, toddlers and infants using different vaccination schedules
- He also said the vaccine has proven safe during these trials and has prevented pneumonia following which the Drugs Controller General (India) approved the vaccine in July 2020 after the approval from the subject expert committee (SEC).
What is the Pneumococcal disease?
It is the name given to a group of diseases caused by a bacterium called Streptococcus Pneumoniae(also known as pneumococcus) different types of diseases caused by pneumococcus Diseases caused by pneumococcus (Streptococcus pneumoniae) are:
- Pneumonia: Inflammation of the lungs, It is a form of acute respiratory infection that causes inflammation or fluid in the lungs. It makes breathing difficult and limits oxygen intake.
- Bacteremia/sepsis: bloodstream infection, with or without infection of secondary sites, e.g., meningitis
- Bacterial meningitis: infection of the membranes that cover and protect the spinal cord and brain
- Otitis media: Middle ear infection
More about Pneumonia
- With pneumonia, the air sacs may fill with fluid or pus. The infection can be life-threatening to anyone, but particularly to infants, children and people over 65.
- Viruses, bacteria, and fungi can all cause pneumonia
- Symptoms include a cough with phlegm or pus, fever, chills and difficulty breathing.
- Antibiotics can treat many forms of pneumonia. Some forms of pneumonia can be prevented by vaccines.
- Pneumonia accounts for nearly 1 million deaths worldwide and is the single largest infectious cause of death among children under five years of age.