Bio Farma Targets Covid-19 Vaccine Production in 2022

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Mahinda Arkyasa

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  • TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Director of Bio Farma Honesti Basyir said that Bio Farma is preparing two schemes in developing the Covid-19 vaccine. For the short term development, the company will conduct international collaboration with Sinovac and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). Meanwhile, for long-term development, the company will develop the vaccine through the Covid-19 Research and Innovation Consortium.

    "The Covid-19 Research and Innovation Consortium are aimed at developing national independence in producing Covid-19 vaccine," Honesti said earlier this week.

    Developing Covid-19 vaccine in cooperation with the Covid-19 Research and Innovation Consortium will involve a number of institutions. The Eijkman Institution is tasked with developing a vaccine candidate, and Bio Farma will produce the vaccine.

    "Early-stage, the Eijkman Institute will deliver a prototype of the vaccine candidate to Bio Farma on February 2021. Next, Bio Farma will conduct development," Honesti said.

    Honesti stated that the development of the vaccine from the Eijkman Institute will begin by producing a prototype of the vaccine candidate. Next, the vaccine will be subjected to a number of tests before it can be mass-produced.

    "Bio Farma will continue the development by upscaling for production scale which will be conducted on Q2 od 2021, followed by pre-clinical [test], Phase 1 Clinical test, Clinical test 2, and Clinical test 3, which will begin on Q4 2021," Honesti said.

    Honesti said that if all goes well, the red and white vaccine for Covid-19 will be finished in the next two years. "If the results are good, the red and white vaccine will be available for the public in 2022," Honesti explained.

    Minsiter of Research and Technology and Chief of the National Research and Innovation Institute (Badan Riset dan Inovasi Nasional - BRIN) Bambang Brodjonegoro visited Bio Farma to examine the readiness of the vaccine production facility on Wednesday, July 29, 2020.

    Bio Farma is currently working together with Sinovac, a Chinese company, to develop Covid-19 vaccine, while at the same time, preparing the development of the red and white vaccine with the Covid-19 Research and Innovation Consortium led by the Eijkman Institute.

    "We want to see Bio Farma's readiness in producing Covid-19 vaccine, the red and white [vaccine] which is being developed by Eijkman with the recombinant protein platform, which is different from Sinovac's inactivates platform," Bambang said.

    "Apprently, Bio Farma has the ability to produce [vaccine] from various platform. But what is most important is, we must be able and independent to provide vaccines for all Indonesian citizens," Bambang added.

    AHMAD FIKRI