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Check list of COVID-19 vaccines approved for emergency use by WHO

A number of other COVID-19 vaccines, including Covaxin, are in various stages of being considered by the WHO for emergency use.

June 02, 2021 / 02:55 PM IST
A vial of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (File image: AP Photo/Ted S Warren, File)

A vial of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (File image: AP Photo/Ted S Warren, File)

The World Health Organization (WHO) on June 1 issued an emergency use listing for the COVID-19 vaccine developed by China’s Sinovac for people age 18 and over. This was the second such authorisation granted to a Chinese company.

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The global health agency said data submitted to its experts showed that two doses of the Sinovac vaccine prevented people from getting symptoms of COVID-19 in about half of those who were administered the jab. However, WHO said there were few older adults enrolled in the research, so it could not estimate how effective the vaccine was in people over 60.

Sinovac’s vaccine, branded as ‘CoronaVac’, is already being used in China and to a limited extent in Azerbaijan, Brazil, Thailand, Indonesia and Turkey, among others.

COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker: All you need to know about manufacturing and pricing

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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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With this, eight COVID-19 vaccines have been granted emergency use authorisation by the WHO. A number of other vaccines are already being administered in many countries even as they wait for to be placed on WHO’s the list.

Here’s a list of other COVID-19 vaccines approved for emergency use by WHO so far:

Pfizer and BioNTech's 'BNT162b2'

It's a nucleoside modified mNRA jab. It is being administered in the United States, Israel and the United Kingdom, among other countries.

AstraZeneca and Oxford University's 'AZD1222'

It uses the recombinant ChAdOx1 adenoviral vector encoding the spike protein antigen of SARS-CoV-2. It is being administered in the United Kingdom, Malaysia, South Korea, Mexico, the European Union, etc.

The same vaccine is registered separately by the Serum Institute of India (SII) as ‘Covishield’.

The ‘AZD1222’ also holds a separate WHO emergency use approval as registered under the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety of South Korea.

Johnson & Johnson-Janssen's 'Ad26.COV2.S'

This is a recombinant, replication in competent adenovirus type 26 (Ad26) vectored vaccine encoding the (SARS-CoV-2) spike protein. It has been deployed in the United States, United Kingdom, and Switzerland, and European nations, among others.

Moderna's 'mRNA-1273'

It is a mNRA-based vaccine encapsulated in a lipid nanoparticle (LNP). It is being administered in Canada, Denmark, Finland, Israel, Japan, Portugal, and Taiwan, among other countries.

Sinopharm-BBIBP's SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine

It is an inactivated virus vaccine produced by the China National Pharmaceutical Group (Sinopharm) and its Beijing Institute of Biological Products. It is mainly being used in China, Bahrain, Seychelles, and the United Arab Emirates, among some other countries.

Besides these, Sputnik V developed by the Russian Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology, Covovax by Novavax, Covaxin by Bharat Biotech and a few others are in various stages of being considered by the WHO for emergency use.

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first published: Jun 2, 2021 09:46 am

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