Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine | 16 Jul 2020

Why in News

The Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd, Pune, has been granted permission to manufacture the first indigenously developed Pneumonia Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) i.e. Pneumococcal Polysaccharide.

Key Points

  • Description: PCV prevents pneumococcal disease.
    • Pneumococcal disease refers to any illness caused by pneumococcal bacteria.
    • The vaccine is a mix of several bacteria of the pneumococci family, which are known to cause pneumonia — hence ‘conjugate’ is included in the name of the vaccine.
    • It is used for active immunisation against invasive disease and pneumonia caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae in infants.
      • In invasive diseases bacteria invades parts of the body like blood fluid, brain and spinal cords.
    • It is administered intramuscularly, i.e injected deep into the muscles.
    • Earlier the demand for such vaccines were provided by licensed importers since the manufacturers were all based outside India.
  • Clinical Trials: Institute has conducted the Phase I, Phase II and Phase III clinical trials of Conjugate Vaccine in India.
    • It has also conducted clinical trials in Gambia.


  • Pneumonia is an acute respiratory infection of the lungs.
  • Cause: It doesn’t have one single cause – it can develop from either bacteria, viruses or fungi in the air.
  • Vulnerability:
    • Children whose immune systems are immature (i.e. newborns) or weakened – such as by undernourishment, or diseases like HIV – are more vulnerable to pneumonia.
  • Spread:
    • Pneumonia is contagious and can be spread through coughing or sneezing. It can also be spread through fluids, like blood during childbirth, or from contaminated surfaces.
  • Treatment: Pneumococcal vaccines are vaccines against the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae.

Serum Institute of India Pvt. Ltd

  • Based in Pune, Maharashtra it is the world's largest vaccine manufacturer by number of doses produced and sold globally.
  • Vaccines manufactured by theInstitute are accredited by the World Health Organization, and are being used in around 170 countries across the globe in their national immunization programs, saving millions of lives throughout the world.

Source: TH