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Meet Dr. Swapan Jana, JU alumnus and Director, R&D, Serum Institute

18 May, 2021 15:34:51
Meet Dr. Swapan Jana, JU alumnus and Director, R&D, Serum Institute

Jadavpur University is one of the premier institutions in India that has been executing prestigious academic and research programmes since its inception in 1955. An alumni from this distinguished seat of learning has made the entire country proud with his brilliant work in this grim battle against COVID-19. Last year when COVID-19 hit the country like a bolt from the blue, it took time to feel the depth of its destructive power. Numb with fear and pain, the entire country anxiously awaited the arrival of some miraculous vaccine that would quash the killer virus and save people from gradual eradication. This was a tough time for scientists and researchers. They had to produce something fast and shield the susceptible countrymen from death.

One man took up the challenge. He worked in a frenzied pace like a man possessed, challenging himself to strive harder on that one vaccine that would succeed in annihilating the villain, corona virus. Covishield is the product of this sedulous man’s determination and sheer hard work. He is Dr Swapan Jana, Director, Research and Development and Manufacturing, Serum Institute of India, Pvt. Ltd, Human Vaccine Development. It was his dogged perseverance that pivoted the entire vaccine development operation since its inception. He has proved himself a wonderful role model alumni of Jadavpur University who is contributing from the frontline in India's war against COVID.


Dr Jana studied Biochemical Engineering at Jadavpur University (B.E FTBE , ME Biochemical Engineering JU 1985-1991). Experts working on the vaccine project with Dr Jana unanimously agree that the year 2020 added new feathers to Dr Jana’s crown. On December 26, the Serum Institute launched the Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine, a pneumococcal polysaccharide conjugate vaccine (PPSV-23) that can prevent 23 types of pneumococcal infections, including pneumonia and lung infections. Dr Jana led the project right from the beginning of its trial in 2013 to its launch in 2020. This economically viable vaccine was very well received by the medical fraternity. Bill Gates himself praised him and his teammates from the phenomenal success of the vaccine and said he believed India has the talent to develop the corona vaccine. His words came true soon and the first consignment of 4,33500 indigenously developed COVID -19 vaccines in partnership with Astra Zeneca was released in the market on January 12. The vaccination drive was officially launched on January 16 and Dr Jana and his team confirmed their names in the annals of history with their seminal work.

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