Coronavirus: India's Covaxin found to be 81% effective against Covid-19 in phase 3 trials

Participants were aged between 18- to 98-years-old, including 2,433 over the age of 60 and 4,500 with comorbidities

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Covaxin, a vaccine made in India, was found to be 81 per cent effective against Covid-19 in phase three trials carried out by pharmaceutical company Bharat Biotech.

In the trial results, the Hyderabad-based manufacturing company said the inactivated Covid-19 vaccine candidate demonstrated high protection against the virus.

The data was collated after 25,800 participants received the vaccine, or placebo, and responded well to the treatment.

Participants were aged between 18 to 98-years-old, including 2,433 over the age of 60 and 4,500 with comorbidities.

Indian Health Minister Harsh Vardhan is administered the COVAXIN vaccine, developed by Indian company Bharat Biotech, at a private hospital in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, March 2, 2021. India is expanding its coronavirus vaccination drive beyond health care and front-line workers, offering the shots to older people and those with medical conditions that put them at risk. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)
Indian health minister, Harsh Vardhan, is administered the Covaxin vaccine. AP 

“Today is an important milestone in vaccine discovery, for science and our fight against coronavirus,” said Dr Krishna Ella, chairman and managing director at Bharat Biotech.

“With today’s results from our phase 3 clinical trials, we have now reported data on our Covid-19 vaccine from phase 1, 2, and 3 trials involving around 27,000 participants.

“Covaxin demonstrates high clinical efficacy trend against Covid-19 but also significant immunogenicity against the rapidly emerging variants.”

Principal investigators were located across 25 study sites and the trial marked the largest of its kind during the pandemic in India.

Trials were conducted in collaboration with the Indian Council of Medical Research.

The Indian government backed the roll-out of the shot after Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, received the inoculation to dispel any hesitancy over the vaccine.

While the vaccine has been deemed safe, there are some associated side-effects associated with it including injection site pain, swelling, redness and itching, as well body aches, headache, fever and nausea.

Covaxin contains a whole virion inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, which is produced in Vero cells.

It is stable at 2°C to 8°C and is shipped in a ready-to-use liquid formulation that permits distribution using existing vaccine supply chain channels.