First indigenously developed and manufactured vaccine against Rotavirus

Date: March 09, 2015

Rotavirus Rotavac diarrhoea

PM launched first indigenously developed  vaccine against Rotavirus

The Prime Minister, launched the first indigenously developed and manufactured Rotavirus vaccine: 'Rotavac.' The indigenously developed vaccine will boost efforts to combat infant mortality due to diarrhoea. It is claimed to be the world's cheapest at the rate of around Rs 60 per dose.

Each year, diarrhoea caused by rotavirus results up to 10 lakh hospitalizations and kills nearly 80 thousand children under the age of 5 years. Besides causing emotional stress to the affected families, it also pushes many Indian families below the poverty line and also imposes significant economic burden on the country. 

The Bharat Biotech India Limited, which was involved in the development and production of the vaccine, has given an undertaking to keep the cost of the vaccine at USD 1 (approx Rs 60) per dose.

About Rotavirus-

Rotavirus is the most common cause of severe diarrhea among infant children.It is a genus of double-stranded RNA virus in the family Reoviridae. There are five species of this virus, referred to as A, B, C, D, and E. Rotavirus A, the most common species, causes more than 90% of rotavirus infections in humans.

The virus is transmitted by the faecal-oral route. It infects and damages the cells that line the small intestine and causes gastroenteritis (which is often called "stomach flu" despite having no relation to influenza).

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The rotavirus was discovered in 1973 by Ruth Bishop and her colleagues.