India regulator approves AstraZeneca COVID vaccine, country’s first: Sources

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India’s drug regulator on Friday approved a coronavirus vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University for emergency use, two sources
with knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

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The approval paves the way for its rollout in the world’s second worst affected country.

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A representative of India’s Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO), whose experts are meeting for the second time this week and also considering two other vaccines, declined to comment.

Read more: AstraZeneca vaccine should combat COVID-19 variant

Britain and Argentina have already authorized the vaccine for urgent public use.

India wants to start administering the shots soon.

It is also considering emergency-use authorization applications for vaccines made by Pfizer Inc with Germany’s BioNTech, and by India’s Bharat Biotech.

At more than 10 million, India has reported the second highest number of coronavirus cases after the United States, though its rate of infection has come down significantly from a mid-September peak.

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