Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin’s phase three data shows 65.2% efficacy against Delta variant of COVID-19, says Lancet

The findings in the medical journal also revealed that the Indian-made vaccine showed 70.8% efficacy against all coronavirus variants

Covaxin, developed by the Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech and the Indian Council of Medical Research, is India’s first homegrown COVID-19 vaccine. AFP

A week after the World Health Organisation (WHO) granted Emergency Use Listing to Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin, Lancet — a peer-reviewed medical journal — has published its findings.

The medical journal stated that phase three data of the vaccine demonstrated a 77.8 percent efficacy against symptomatic COVID-19 and also a 70.8 percent protection against all variants of SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The main findings from the journal are as stated:

• Covaxin shows a 77.8 percent efficacy against symptomatic COVID-19 and a 63.6 percent protection against asymptomatic COVID-19
• The analysis demonstrates Covaxin to be 93.4 percent effective against severe symptomatic COVID-19
• Covaxin demonstrates a 65.2 percent efficacy against the easily transmissible Delta variant of coronavirus
• Efficacy data demonstrates 70.8 percent protection against all variants of SARS-CoV-2 virus
• Data also revealed that only 12 percent subjects experienced side effects on taking Covaxin and less than 0.5 percent experienced serious adverse events

Dr Krishna Ella, CMD of Bharat Biotech reacting to the findings in the journal, said, “The peer-review of Covaxin phase III clinical trial data in The Lancet, an authoritative voice in global medicine validates our commitment to data transparency and meeting the stringent peer-review standards of world leading medical journals.

“The data from our product development and clinical trials have been published in 10 peer-reviewed journals, making Covaxin one of the most highly published COVID-19 vaccines in the world.

“This accomplishment reflects the undeterred commitment by my team members at Bharat Biotech, our public partners, Indian Council of Medical Research, National Institute of Virology, and the trust imposed by our trial participants who made this happen.”

Covaxin’s phase III trials involved 25,800 volunteers from across the country, making it the India’s largest ever clinical trial conducted for a COVID-19 vaccine.

Indian Council of Medical Research’s Director General Dr Balram Bhargava said the publication of the efficacy data in Lancet speaks highly about the strong position of Covaxin among global frontrunner COVID-19 vaccines.

“I am delighted to see that the phase III efficacy data has also been published in the Lancet, one of the most reputed journals worldwide. This itself speaks high about the strong position of Covaxin amongst other global frontrunners COVID-19 vaccines. The bench to bedside journey of Covaxin in less than 10 months showcases the immense strength of “Atmanirbhar Bharat” along with the Indian academia and industry in fighting against the odds and carving a niche in the global community,” Dr Bhargava said.

Other than the WHO authorisation, Covaxin has received emergency use authorisations in several countries. In fact, on 10 November, Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya said that 96 countries have recognised Covaxin, including Canada, US, Australia, Spain, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Belgium, Russia, and Switzerland.

As of now, Covaxin is being evaluated in trials for children between 2-18 years of age and Ocugen, the American partner of Bharat Biotech, has sought approval for the same in the United States and Canada.

With inputs from agencies

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