New Delhi: The Union health ministry is expected soon to approve the Corbevax vaccine developed by Biologicals E as a precautionary dose (booster dose or third dose) to people who have received either Covishield or both doses of Covaccine, official sources said on Tuesday as reported by news agency PTI. Official sources said that if the government approves this recommendation, it will be the first time in the country that a precautionary dose will be given other than the one given during the primary vaccination.
Official sources told PTI that the COVID-19 Working Group (CWG) of the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunization (NTAGI) made the recommendation in its 48th meeting held on July 20.
“Corbevax will be considered as a precaution dose after completion of 6 months or 26 weeks from the date of administration of the second dose of either Covaxin or Covishield vaccines for those aged above 18 years enabling use of Corbevax as a heterologous COVID-19 vaccine for precaution dose administration in this age group,” a source said.
India’s first indigenous RBD protein subunit vaccine, Corbevax, is currently being used in the country to immunize children between the ages of 12 and 14.
The COVID-19 Working Group reviewed the data for Phase III in its meeting on July 20. In this, Covid-19 negative people aged 18 to 80 years who had taken the first two doses of Covishield or Covaccine, after being given the Corbevax vaccine as the third dose, the effect on their immunity was assessed.
“Following the examination of the data, the CWG observed that Corbevax vaccine can induce a significant increase in antibody titers when given to those who have received either Covaxin or Covishield, which is likely to be protective as per the neutralization data also,” the source said.
Significantly, the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) on June 4 approved Corbevax to be administered to people 18 and above as a third dose.
India on April 10 began administering precaution doses ofvaccines to all aged above 18 years.
(With PTI Inputs)