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“COVAXIN Effective for the 617 Variant of Virus”: How Our Desi Vaccine is Proving Naysayers Wrong

Of the two Made in India vaccines, COVAXIN is not only produced in India but it is indigenously developed in India by our own scientists and researchers.

COVAXIN has a come a long way in the past few months. From being pulled into controversy for reasons that were solely political to hesitancy fuelled by Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel who had doubted the efficacy of this vaccine, COVAXIN has proven its mettle to the science community at a global level.

In a recent development, White House’s Chief Medical Adviser and America’s top pandemic expert Dr Anthony Fauci has said that the  COVAXIN is found to be effective in neutralising the 617 variants of the COVID-19 virus.

According to PTI report, Dr Fauci told reporters that,

“This is something where we’re still gaining data on a daily basis. But the most recent data, was looking at convalescent Sera of COVID-19 cases and people who received the vaccine used in India, the COVAXIN. It was found to neutralise the 617 variants.”

COVAXIN’s Future : Become a Global Name

Indian Council of Medical Research has claimed recently that COVAXIN is effective in dealing with the double mutant strain, B.1.617, of SARS-CoV-2 and other variants.

In the first week of March this year, COVAXIN concluded the phase 3 trail. It showed an interim vaccine efficacy of 81% in preventing COVID-19.

The Phase 3 trial, jointly initiated by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Bharat Biotech International Limited (Bharat Biotech) in mid-November 2020, was conducted in a total of 25,800 individuals across 21 sites. The interim efficacy trend of 81%, analysed as per the protocol approved by the DCGI, places the Made in India vaccine at par with other global front-runner candidates.

With the Modi Government recently allowing Mumbai’s Haffkine Institute to manufacture COVAXIN, many plants across India have been inspired to scale up the COVAXIN production.

Recently Bharat Biotech has announced that it is expanding its capacity to produce 70 crore COVAXIN doses annually. It has also got Emergency Use Approval in many countries such as Mexico, Philippines, Iran, Paraguay, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Guyana, Venezuela, Botswana and Zimbabwe; the approval process is in progress in the US and many European countries.

The COVAXIN is the first COVID-19 vaccine that has been developed completely in India. In March 2020, following the successful isolation of the SARS CoV-2 virus at ICMR-National Institute of Virology (NIV), ICMR entered into a public-private partnership with Bharat Biotech to develop the virus isolate into an effective vaccine candidate.

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