Covovax Best Booster Dose: Virologist Dr. Shahid Jameel said Covovax would be a better booster dose for those who received the Covishield vaccine than another dose of the same jab.
“The data available now suggests that among the vaccines approved in India, Covovax would be a better booster in people vaccinated with Covishield than another dose of Covishield,” Jameel, former head of the SARS advisory group – Indian SARS-COV-2 Genomics Consortia (INSACOG) said PTI.
Last week, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that a “precautionary dose” would be administered to healthcare and frontline workers and citizens over 60 and with co-morbidities from January 10.
These beneficiaries will be eligible for the booster dose after nine months, i.e. 39 weeks from the date of administration of the second dose.
Officials, however, said the “precautionary dose” will be a third dose of the same vaccine a person has already received, PTI reported.
Covovax, developed by US vaccine maker Novavax Inc and manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, was approved by the government for emergency use on Monday.
Reputable virologist Gagandeep Kang, in an interview with the news portal ‘The Wire’, said that there is currently no data in India regarding which vaccine to use for the third dose.
Kang said that a British study recently evaluated the immune response generated in people who had previously received two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine (Covishield) either by a booster dose of the same vaccine or by one of the Novavax vaccines (known in India under the name Covovax).
The study found that a third dose of Covishield increased the geometric mean ratio (GMR) by 3.25, while a booster dose of Covovax increased the same eightfold and that of an mRNA vaccine. had done it 24 times, she said.
India has registered more than 800 cases of Omicron in 21 states and Union territories so far.