Covaxin Effective Against UK Strain And Indian Variant: Bharat Biotech.
The indigenously produced Covxing is effective against multiple strains of coronavirus, including those found in India and the United Kingdom, Bharat Biotech said on Sunday.
Citing a study published in the medical journal ‘Clinical Infectious Diseases, the company said that Covaxin has been established to produce neutralizing titers against all of the key emerging variants tested, including B.1.617 and B.1.1.7, first identified in India and the United Kingdom, respectively.
At the moment, Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin is one of three Covid-19 vaccines approved for emergency use in India. The other two are the Covishield vaccines from the Serum Institute of India and Sputnik V from Russia.
“Covaxin gains international recognition once again, for published scientific research data demonstrating protection against new variants. Another feather in its cap,” Bharat Biotech co-founder and deputy CEO Suchitra Ella said in a tweet.
The study was conducted in collaboration with the National Institute of Virology and the Indian Council for Medical Research.
Covaxin gets international recognition yet again, by scientific research data published demonstrating protection against the new variants.Yet another feather in its cap👍🏼@PMOIndia @nsitharaman @drharshvardhan @MoHFW_INDIA @ICMRDELHI @DBTIndia @doctorsoumya @BharatBiotech pic.twitter.com/AUhphvvivz
— suchitra ella (@SuchitraElla) May 15, 2021
The study found a modest reduction in neutralization by a factor of 1.95 against the B.1.617 variant compared to the D614G vaccine variant, Bharat Biotech noted.
Despite this reduction, the neutralizing titer levels with B.1.617 remain above the levels expected to be protective, he added.
At the moment, there are seven variants of Covid-19 found in India:
1) Double mutant strain (variant B.1.617)
Variant B.1.617 contains mutations of two separate virus variants, namely, E484Q and L452R. The double mutant strain was found in saliva samples collected from Maharashtra, Punjab, and Delhi.
2) UK strain (variant B.1.1.7)
India first reported the British variant of the coronavirus on December 29. Since then, hundreds of cases of the new strain have been reported across the country, with a peak number of cases reported in Punjab.
3) South African strain (Variant B.1.351)
This strain was reportedly first reported in the country in February. This strain contains a mutation called N501Y that makes it more transmissible. According to the WHO, this variant “is less susceptible to antibody neutralization” than other variants.
4) Brazilian strain (Variant P.1)
As of March 30, one case of infection of the Brazilian strain was reported in Maharashtra.
5) Variant N440K
This variant has been reported in many parts of southern India, mainly Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
It is reportedly 15 times more virulent than the original variant because if a person were infected with the original variant, they would reach the stage of dyspnea or hypoxia within a week, but if a person were infected with the N440K variant, they would reach the stage of a serious condition in as little as three to four days.
6) B.1.617 Variant
7) B.1 Variant
While little is known about the last two variants, scientists have said that they are more dangerous than the N440K variant.