New Omicron Booster Vaccine Unveiled: mRNA Technology Takes Aim at Variant

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The office of the Drug Control General of India (DCGI) Grants Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to Omicron-Specific mRNA-Based Booster Vaccine.

Mission COVID Suraksha’s Support Leads to Fifth Vaccine, GEMCOVAC-OM, Development. (Representative Image/ Getty Images)

Union Minister Jitendra Singh launched India’s first Omicron-specific mRNA-based booster vaccine, GEMCOVAC-OM, for Covid.

The vaccine was developed by Genova using indigenous platform technology, with funding support from the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC).

Recently, the vaccine received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the Drug Control General of India (DCGI).

GEMCOVAC-OM is the fifth vaccine developed under the Mission COVID Suraksha initiative by DBT and BIRAC, as part of the government’s Atmanirbhar Bharat 3.0 package for accelerated COVID-19 vaccine development.

Minister Singh highlighted that this advanced technology platform can facilitate the production of other vaccines in a shorter timeframe.

GEMCOVAC-OM, the newly launched Omicron-specific mRNA-based booster vaccine, possesses the advantage of being thermostable, eliminating the need for ultra-cold chain infrastructure typically required by other mRNA-based vaccines.

Union Minister Jitendra Singh highlighted that this characteristic enables easy deployment in the last mile of India’s vaccination efforts, as the existing supply chain infrastructure is sufficient for its distribution.

Additionally, the unique feature of GEMCOVAC-OM is its needle-free administration, utilizing an intra-dermal injection device system. The vaccine has demonstrated significantly higher immune responses in study participants, emphasizing the importance of variant-specific vaccines to achieve the desired immune response.

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Toshika Chauhan

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