Bharat Biotech claims that its vaccine, COVAXIN, shows interim vaccine efficacy of 81% in advanced clinical trials.
India’s COVID-19 vaccine produced by Bharat Biotech has shown interim vaccine efficacy of 81% in advanced clinical trials, the company based in the southern city of Hyderabad said.
The interim analysis was based on 43 recorded cases of COVID-19 in the 25,800-participant trial, conducted in partnership with the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) – India’s premier medical research body.
Thirty-six of the 43 cases were in participants who received a placebo, compared to seven cases in people who received the Bharat Biotech vaccine, indicating an efficacy rate of 80.6%, the company said on Wednesday.
India had approved the vaccine, under the brand COVAXIN, in January without late-stage efficacy data, raising questions about its effectiveness.
But the move was hailed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a success in India’s push towards self-sufficiency.
The vaccination campaign in the world’s second most populous country, currently underway, includes COVAXIN and a vaccine developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca, named Covishield.
The world’s largest vaccine manufacturer
India is the second country most affected by COVID-19 with more than 11 million cases. Almost 160,000 people have died from the disease.
The Serum Institute of India (SII), the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer, produces the Covishield vaccine in partnership with the University of Oxford and the British company.
Earlier this week Indian Prime Minister Modi received the first dose of COVAXIN. Many of his ministers followed suit, opting for the Indian vaccine.
India has vaccinated more than 10.5 million health and frontline workers since the start of its vaccination campaign on January 16.
But only 1.2 million of them, or about 11%, took the locally developed COVAXIN, while the remaining 9.4 million used the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, according to the government’s online platform Co-. Win used to monitor the vaccination campaign.