New Delhi: The Drug Controller General of India has granted emergency use approval for ZyCoV-D, the Covid-19 vaccine by Zydus Cadila that is the world’s first DNA shot against the coronavirus. The vaccine can be given to adults and children aged 12 years and above, reports said.India aims to vaccinate all eligible adults by December. And the nod to ZyCoV-D comes as a boost for the vaccination programme as India plans to administer the first shot to children under 18 now.ALSO READ | Fully Vaccinated Yet Infected With Covid? Study Says Delta Variant Responsible For Breakthrough InfectionsIn July, the makers of the vaccine had said it was effective against the new Covid variants, especially the Delta strains. “This is a historic milestone with ZyCoV-D, a product of Indian innovation becoming the world’s first DNA vaccine being offered for human use and supporting the world’s largest immunization drive,” Pankaj R. Patel, Chairman, Cadila Healthcare Limited, said in a statement.The company said this is for the first time that a technologically advanced vaccine has been successfully developed on the Plasmid DNA platform for use in humans.
10 Things To Know About ZyCoV-D
While most Covid vaccines need two doses or even a single dose, ZyCoV-D will be given in three doses — first on Day Zero, second on Day 28, and the last on the 56th day.
The company had earlier said it also has a needle-free application system, as opposed to traditional syringes.
According to reports, ZyCoV-D uses a section of genetic material from the Covid virus “that gives instructions as either DNA or RNA to make the specific protein that the immune system recognises” or responds to.
The vaccine was the first to be tested in the adolescent population of 12-18 years age group in India.
Cadila Healthcare aims to make 100 million to 120 million doses of ZyCoV-D annually.
ZyCoV-D has been developed in partnership with the Department of Biotechnology.
After Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin, it is the second home-grown shot to get emergency authorisation in India.
ZyCoV-D is the sixth vaccine authorised for use in India.
While filing the application for emergency use authorisation in July, the firm had said ZyCoV-D’s efficacy rate was found to be 66.6% in a late-stage trial of over 28,000 volunteers across the country.
The company also plans to seek approval for the two dose regimen of the vaccine.
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