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Coronavirus vaccine update: Bharat Biotech starts human trials of Covaxin

The human trial of Covaxin began at Rohtak's Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences on July 17, Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij said.

July 18, 2020 / 12:58 PM IST
3 | NHS England in talks on rollout of potential COVID vaccine from December, says report: The National Health Service (NHS) is in talks with the British Medical Association (BMA) and others around mobilising the rollout of a potential COVID-19 vaccine from December, Pulse website for health professionals reported. >There is optimism around the first cohorts being given a vaccine in December but there is a 50/50 chance of the vaccine being available by that time, Pulse reported, citing a person close to the discussions.

3 | NHS England in talks on rollout of potential COVID vaccine from December, says report: The National Health Service (NHS) is in talks with the British Medical Association (BMA) and others around mobilising the rollout of a potential COVID-19 vaccine from December, Pulse website for health professionals reported. >There is optimism around the first cohorts being given a vaccine in December but there is a 50/50 chance of the vaccine being available by that time, Pulse reported, citing a person close to the discussions.

Bharat Biotech has initiated human clinical trials for Covaxin, a vaccine candidate for COVID-19, across the country with 375 volunteers, amid the surging numbers of coronavirus cases.

India's COVID-19 caseload surged to 10,38,716 with 34,884 people testing positive for coronavirus in the last 24 hours, according to data released by the Union Health Ministry on July 18.

The Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) had permitted two vaccines -- one developed by the Bharat Biotech International Limited in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research and another one by ZydusCadila Healthcare Ltd to go in for the first and second phase of human clinical trials.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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> The human trial of Covaxin began at Rohtak's Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences on July 17, Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij said.

> Drug firm Zydus Cadila is looking to complete clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate ZyCoV-D in seven months, according to the company's chairman. The company had on Wednesday started clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate with the first human dosing.

> Accelerating the work in various spheres to combat COVID-19, institutes under the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) are developing research resources such as indigenous animal models, pseudo-viruses, clinical immunological assays and antibodies. DBT's Translational Health Science and Technology Institute (THSTI), Faridabad, has established a hamster infection model for evaluation of antivirals, therapeutics and vaccines, it said.

> India and the US are working together on combating the coronavirus and collaboration is underway for co-development of a COVID-19 vaccine, the Indian envoy has said, underlining that the partnership between the two countries in health, life sciences and technology sectors can bring benefits to the entire world.

(With inputs from PTI)

Follow our full coverage on COVID-19 here.
Moneycontrol News
first published: Jul 18, 2020 12:57 pm

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