A lead scientist citing preliminary results of a study Tuesday said that Covishield and Covaxin, the two coronavirus vaccines currently in use in India, are effective against the “Indian strain” and show “milder” disease in case. of infection after vaccination.
After vaccination, infections are milder, said Anurag Agrawal, director of the Institute for Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB). The study was carried out on the efficacy of the vaccines available in the B.1.617 variant of SARS-CoV2.
Variant B.1.617 is also called “double mutant” or “Indian strain”. The SARS-CoV2 variant B.1.617 is mainly prevalent in Maharashtra and Delhi, which have been severely affected by a devastating second wave of the pandemic.
“Initial positive neutralization studies of B.1.617, with post-Covaxin or Covishield sera, correlate with milder illnesses during post-vaccination breakthrough infections. This is positive as we obtain quantitative data for a better understanding of protection against infections, “Agrawal tweeted.
IGIB is an institute dependent on the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
Another study conducted by the Center for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) in Hyderabad under the CSIR suggests that early results using an in vitro neutralization assay show that both convalescent (previous infection) sera and Covishield-vaccinated sera offer protection against variant B.1.617.
“Very preliminary but encouraging result: #Covishield protects against # B1617. First results using an in vitro neutralization assay show that both convalescent (previous infection) sera and Covishield vaccinated sera offer protection against variant B.1.617, aka #DoubleMutant, “CCMB Director Rakesh Mishra tweeted last week.
Variant B.1.617 has three new spike protein mutations. Two mutations, E484Q and L452R, are in the area important for antibody-based neutralization.
The third mutation, P681R, allows the virus to enter cells a little better. These are the defining characteristics of the variant.