List of Covid Vaccines available in India, and which one is more effective

COVID 19, this virus doesn’t require any introduction separately at this stage of the pandemic. It has been more than a year that mankind has been constantly battling this invisible monster that has affected all our lives. 

After a long wait and struggle, with the death toll rising each day COVID-19 vaccine was released. India started administering vaccines from 16th of January 2021.

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Purpose of COVID 19 Vaccine

A COVID 19 vaccine is manufactured to provide acquired immunity against Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-COV-2). Before the COVID-19 pandemic, there existed an acquired and established body of knowledge regarding the functioning and structure of coronaviruses causing respiratory diseases like SARS(Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) and MERS(Middle East Respiratory Syndrome).

This established body of knowledge enabled the speedy development of diverse vaccine technologies during the initial phase of the year 2020. On the 10th of January 2020, that genetic sequence data of the SARS-COV-2 was shared through GISAID, a global initiative and the primary source of information, established in 2008. It gives open access to data of influenza virus and the coronavirus responsible for the current pandemic. Having acquired access to this body of information and source, all pharmaceutical companies worldwide, including India, committed themselves to address COVID 19.

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List of COVID Vaccines available in India

Vaccine Scenario in India

At the initial stage of the vaccination program in India, two COVID-19 vaccines were approved for emergency use in India. The list of COVID vaccines available in India are:

  • Covishield– This emergency vaccine is a version of the Oxford Astra Zeneca vaccine. The Serurum Institute of India has manufactured it. Currently, a joint research is being conducted. Now at Phase II or III, randomized and controlled study is being done to determine the safety and immunogenicity of the Covishield vaccine. Vaccine’s safety and efficacy has been evaluated on the basis of four mass trials. Covishield is developed using the viral vector platform. An adenovirus of a chimpanzee has been modified to carry COVID 19 protein boosters into human cells. The exact technology was also used to develop vaccines for the Ebola virus.
  • Covaxin– Another of COVID vaccines available in India is Covaxin which has been developed by Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the ICMR, i.e, Indian Council of Medical Research and NIV, i.e, National Institute of Virology. The vaccine was manufactured and kept in a high containment facility. Multiple centres studied and evaluated the vaccine’s safety, tolerability, reactogenicity and immunogenicity. It has been administered and approved for Phase 1 and 2 human clinical trials. Covaxin is an inactivated vaccine. The trials and test have mainly been done on dead viruses. Whole Virion Inactivated Vero Cell derivative technology has been used to develop covaxin. They contain inactive viruses that shall not infect any human but can still help the immune system to adapt and prepare a defence mechanism to battle against the active coronavirus.
  • Sputnik V– The third of COVID vaccines in India soon to be made available to the public is Sputnik V. This vaccine got approval in April 2021. It is expected to get deployed in the beginning or by late May 2021.
  • Covovax– This vaccine is also called SARS-CoV-2 rS protein nanoparticle, together with adjuvant Matrix-M1. It is a vaccine being developed by Novavax in collaboration with Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). In India, this vaccine is undergoing trials under the brand name Covovax.
  • Other Vaccines- There are other COVID vaccines available in India that are undergoing trials. These are:
  1. ZyCoV-D- This vaccine is at the Phase 3 trial stage. So far 30000 candidates have participated in the clinical trial.
  2. Bio E COVID 19– This is also in the Phase 3 trial stage. About more than 1268 participants have undergone clinical trials.
  3. HGC019- This is an RNA type vaccine. It is only in its 1st Phase with hardly 120 participants who have undergone clinical trials.
  4. BBV154- This is an intra-nasal vaccine. Bharat Biotech is conducting a Multicentre study to evaluate its safety, immunogenicity and reactogenicity. As an intra- nasal vaccine, it is expected to boost up the immune response. It can neutralise IgG and mucosal IgA and responses of the T Cell Immune responses in the nasal mucosa can be effective to block infection and transmission of COVID 19.

So, these are the names of COVID vaccines available in India. A suggestion for you is that whatever vaccine is available in your area,please immunize yourself as soon as possible

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Effectiveness of COVID Vaccine Available in India

As of April 27, 2021, India has administered about 147,827,367 overall doses of vaccines, including first and second dosage. So far 9% of the Indian population has received one dose of the currently available vaccine and 2% has received both doses. Covaxin has been proved to have an efficacy rate of 81%, while Covishield has shown 90% effectiveness when people were initially given half a dose first and then a full dose.

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The Serum Institute of India has said that Covishield is “highly effective” but still speculations and controversies surround it. The third vaccine Sputnik V is now approved and is expected to give 92% protection against COVID 19, but unless it starts getting administered we still don’t know for sure which vaccine should be the best one to protect us from this deadly new strain of the COVID 19 virus. 


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