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NEW DELHI: India's Gennova Biopharmaceuticals is working on an Omicron-specific COVID-19 vaccine candidate that could be ready in a month or two, a person with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

The source, who did not want to be named as the information was private, said the product might need a small trial in India before it could be rolled out as a booster or standalone vaccine.

A representative for Gennova, a unit of drugmaker Emcure Pharmaceuticals that does business in some 70 countries, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Pfizer Inc said last week a redesigned COVID-19 vaccine that specifically targets the Omicron coronavirus variant could be ready to launch by March.

Nepal starts giving COVID-19 vaccine booster shots

The source said Gennova on Friday separately submitted to India's drug regulator phase 2 trial data for its original mRNA vaccine candidate. The government said last year that product was found to be "safe, tolerable, and immunogenic" in the participants of an initial study.

If given emergency-use approval, this would be the country's first mRNA COVID-19 vaccine like the ones developed by Pfizer and Moderna.

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