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India's Expert Panel Advises Full Approval for Covishield, Covaxin

Covishield and Covaxin, the two COVID-19 vaccines that have dominated the country's vaccination effort, received full approval from the Indian pharma regulator's topic expert committee on Wednesday.

The Serum Institute of India manufactures Covishield, which was created by the University of Oxford and the Anglo-Swedish drugmaker AstraZeneca Plc (AZN.L). Bharat Biotech, a privately held company, created Covaxin, India's first home-grown coronavirus vaccine.

The committee advised that the Drugs Controller General of India upgrade the status of the two shots from restricted use in emergencies for adults, the regulator said on Twitter.

Covaxin and Covishield received emergency use authorisation in India in January 2021, with more than a combined 1.5 billion doses having been administered so far, according to government data.

The Serum Institute has nearly quadrupled its monthly capacity of AstraZeneca's shots to as many as 240 million doses and is prepared to export "large volumes" from January, its CEO told Reuters in October.

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