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Harsh Vardhan backs Bharat Biotech's 'Covaxin' as opposition questions its efficacy

Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan slammed senior Congress party leaders Shashi Tharoor and Jairam Ramesh, and Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav for politicising the 'critical issue'

twitter-logoBusinessToday.In | January 4, 2021 | Updated 08:30 IST
Harsh Vardhan backs Bharat Biotech's 'Covaxin' as opposition questions its efficacy
Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan

Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan gave a justification on the emergency approval of an indigenously developed coronavirus vaccine 'Covaxin' by Bharat Biotech after several opposition party leaders questioned its efficacy.

Harsh Vardhan wrote numerous tweets in support of Covaxin. According to Harsh Vardhan, "Vaccines approved globally based on gene encoding spike proteins have protective efficacy of over 90 per cent. However, COVAXIN based on the whole inactivated virus has other antigenic epitopes in addition to spike protein. So, it's likely to have similar protective efficacy reported for others."


He also added that Covaxin has better chances to act against new variant of COVID-19 called N501Y due to "antigenic drift as it contains immunogens (epitopes) from other genes in addition to those from spike protein Inactivated virus from NIV also had D614G mutation".

Additionally, the data from Covaxin's phase-1 and 2 trials had revealed that it not only produced neutralising antibodies in all participants but also sensitises CD4 T lymphocytes that impart durable immune response, Dr Harsh Vardha said.

The health minister also slammed senior Congress party leaders Shashi Tharoor and Jairam Ramesh, and Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav for politicising the "critical issue".

The minister warned the oppositions not to discredit well laid out science-backed protocols followed for approving coronavirus vaccine.

He also wrote, "India celebrates the win but Opposition fails to applaud our prowess," in one of his tweets.

Also read: 'Congratulations India!' say netizens as Serum, Bharat Biotech COVID-19 vaccines get emergency use approval

Also read: India's nod to indigenous vaccine condemned over lack of data released on efficacy

Also read: India approves Serum-Oxford, Bharat Biotech COVID vaccines for emergency use

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