Indian vaccine has been found to 'neutralise' the deadly Delta variant

This Indian-made vaccine could be crucial in the world-wide fight against the Delta variant.

The US National Institute of Health (NIH) has found that the Indian-made vaccine, Covaxin, has the ability to 'effectively neutralise' two COVID variants of concerns—Alpha, also known as the Kent variant, and Delta, the strain originally found in India.

What is Covaxin?

Covaxin is India’s first indigenous COVID vaccine which was developed by pharmaceutical company Bharat Biotech. It was given emergency approval earlier this year even though the results from the phase three clinical trials are yet to be published. Meanwhile, initial results from the trial suggest that ‘the vaccine has 78% efficacy against symptomatic disease, 100% efficacy against severe COVID-19, including hospitalisation.’

Currently, three vaccines have been approved and are circulating in the subcontinent, AstraZeneca—known in India as Covishield—Covaxin, and Russia's Sputnik V.

Neutralising variants of concern

More recently, the NIH carried out two studies to find out how effective the Indian vaccine is against variantsofconcern. They analysed blood samples from those who received Covaxin and the results were promising. The NIH stated in a press release:

The results from two studies of blood serum from people who had received Covaxin suggest that the vaccine generates antibodies that effectively neutralise the B.1.1.7 (Alpha) and B.1.617 (Delta) variants of SARS-CoV-2, first identified in the UK and India, respectively.

Researchers identified that the secret behind the success of Covaxin was an adjuvant that was used in it called Alhydroxiaquim-II. This powerful ingredient was developed with NIH funding and was tested by American biotechnology company ViroVax with the further support from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). Anthony S Fauci, director of NIAID said:

I am pleased that a novel vaccine adjuvant developed in the US with NIAID support is part of an efficacious Covid-19 vaccine available to people in India.

As of now, Covaxin has yet to be approved by the World Health Organisation.

Three cases of the Indian variant found in Leicester, which vaccines can it bypass Three cases of the Indian variant found in Leicester, which vaccines can it bypass