The Drug Controller General of India, G.N. Singh, told India Today the government has been working with Hilleman on a proposal to research and develop formulations of oral rotavirus vaccines that are thermostable across a variety of temperatures and environmental conditions.
When Merck's Indian JV, Hilleman Laboratories, teamed up in June with Swedish biotech Gotovax AB, the plan was to get an affordable cholera vaccine to the developing world. Just a few months out, it's inked a pact to make that happen faster.
While the world already has a pair of cholera vaccines that have been proven safe and effective, it lacks a low-cost option that can stay effective without cold storage in impoverished areas where the disease hits hardest. And with a new partnership, that's exactly what Merck's Indian joint venture is looking to change.