Bharat Biotech's intranasal COVID-19 vaccine likely to be in the fray as booster dose choice

Bharat Biotech Covaxin
Representative image: IANS

New Delhi: Indian biotechnology firm Bharat Biotech has sought permission from the Central Government to conduct the phase-3 trials for its intranasal Covid-19 vaccine.

In the trial conducted among health workers, no serious issues were reported from the intranasal vaccine. But the Central Government insists that the new vaccine would be given approval only if it is scientifically proven.

Only those who have taken two doses of either Covishield or Covaxin will be allowed to take intranasal vaccine as a booster dose if that is the choice.

Omicron count

Meanwhile, two hundred cases of Omicron variant of coronavirus have been detected across 12 states and UTs in India so far out of which 77 patients have recovered or migrated, the Union Health Ministry said on Tuesday.
Maharashtra and Delhi have recorded 54 cases of Omicron variant each, while Telangana registered 20 cases, Karnataka 19, Rajasthan 18, Kerala 15 and Gujarat 14 cases.

Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya told Rajya Sabha that the country was ready to deal with any emergency situation to deal with the spread of Omicron.

Within two months, vaccine production in the country could be raised to 45 crore doses, he said, while adding, 88 percent of eligible citizens had taken a single dose and 58 percent two doses.

The study by the London Imperial College said that there was no proof available to say that Omicron variant of the virus has less intensity than the Delta variant. The study further found that the Omicron variant could easily overcome one's immunity acquired through COVID-19 attack and vaccine administration.

Moderna vaccine-makers said that its full booster dose would lead to 88 percent increase of antibodies against Omicron, while half the booster dose would lead to a 58 percent hike in the antibodies working against Omicron. 

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