Coronavirus Explained: All About Zydus Cadila’s Needle Free COVID-19 Vaccine, ZyCoV-DZyCoV-D is the world’s first plasmid DNA vaccine
Highlights
  • COVID vaccine ZyCov-D has been tested among people aged 12 and above
  • ZyCov-D is a three dose, needle-free vaccine
  • ZyCoV-D needs to be stored at 2-8 degree Celsius

New Delhi: India’s coronavirus vaccination drive began on January 16 this year with two COVID-19 vaccinesOxford-AstraZeneca’s Covishield and Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin. In a little over six months’ time, India has vaccinated 41.54 crore people against COVID-19 and also given emergency use license to two other vaccines – Gamaleya Institute’s Sputnik V and Moderna’s vaccine. Now, on the way is Zydus Cadila’s needle-free COVID-19 vaccine, ZyCoV-D, which can be India’s fifth COVID vaccine and second indigenous vaccine. On July 1, Gujarat-based pharmaceutical company Zydus Cadila applied to the Drug Controller General of India, seeking an emergency use license for its COVID vaccine. Here’s everything you need to know about ZyCoV-D, the world’s first plasmid DNA vaccine.

Also Read: COVID-19 Explained: What is ‘Long COVID’?

What Is COVID-19 Vaccine ZyCoV-D?

ZyCoV-D is a plasmid DNA vaccine which when injected produces the spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and elicits an immune response mediated by the cellular and humoral arms of the human immune system, which play a vital role in protection from disease as well as viral clearance, states the press release issued by the company.

In simple terms, DNA vaccines carry into the body the genetic code for that part of the virus that triggers the immune system in the body. The message is decoded then to produce antibodies. This ensures that when an individual gets the actual virus, the body already knows how to fight it on.

Also Read: COVID-19 Outbreak Explained: What Is Delta Plus Variant Of Coronavirus And Why Is It A Variant Of Concern?

What Differentiates ZyCoV-D?

Instead of using an injection, ZyCoV-D is applied using The PharmaJet needle-free system, Tropis. The technology uses a single-use, sterile, disposable syringe with a reusable injector. A needle-free syringe is filled with the vaccine and loaded to the injector. While administering, the syringe is simply pressed at the injection site. Following this, pressure needs to be applied to the injection site with cotton or gauzed for 60 seconds and then an adhesive bandage is applied, according to PharmaJet’s user guide.

ZyCoV-D is an intradermal injection which means it only goes into the skin, unlike large needles that are given in the muscles. According to the company, the PharmaJet needle-free system can also lead to a significant reduction in any kind of side-effects.

Also Read: COVID-19 Explainer: What Is Antibody Cocktail And How Does It Help In Coronavirus Treatment?

ZyCov-D is a vaccine that uses a genetically engineered version of a type of DNA molecule known as a ‘plasmid’. The plasmid DNA platform provides ease of manufacturing with minimal biosafety requirements (BSL-1) unlike Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin that requires high biosafety level of BSL-3.

The plug and play technology on which the plasmid DNA platform is based is ideally suited for dealing with COVID-19 as it can be easily adapted to deal with mutations in the virus, such as those already occurring, said the company.

How Effective Is The ZyCoV-D?

The interim results of the Phase III of ZyCov-D clinical trials covering 28,000 volunteers, including nearly 1,000 subjects in the age group of 12 to 18 in more than 50 sites across India, has shown 66.6 per cent efficacy.

Also Read: India Fights COVID: Frequently Asked Questions About COVID-19 Vaccination Answered

The tolerability profile was similar to that seen in the adult population. Primary efficacy of 66.6% has been attained for symptomatic RT-PCR positive cases in the interim analysis. Whereas, no moderate case of COVID-19 disease was observed in the vaccine arm post administration of the third dose suggesting 100% efficacy for moderate disease. No severe cases or deaths due to COVID-19 occurred in the vaccine arm after administration of the second dose of the vaccine, said the company.

Once approved, the vaccine will be available to adolescents aged 12 and above as the vaccine has proven to be safe among the said age group as well.

Also Read: COVID-19 Vaccine Explainer: How Do Vaccines Work?

Dosing Regimen And Storage Requirement For ZyCoV-D

ZyCoV-D is a three dose, intradermal vaccine. The three doses are to be administered on day 0, day 28 and day 56. As per the company, ZyCoV-D needs to be stored at 2-8 degree Celsius. But, it has shown good stability at temperatures of 25 degree Celsius for at least three months.

The thermostability of the vaccine will help in easy transportation and storage of the vaccine and reduce any cold chain breakdown challenges leading to vaccine wastage, stated the company in a press note.

Also Read: Coronavirus Vaccine Glossary: 15 Terms To Know About Vaccination

NDTV – Dettol Banega Swasth India campaign is an extension of the five-year-old Banega Swachh India initiative helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. It aims to spread awareness about critical health issues facing the country. In wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (WaterSanitation and Hygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign highlights the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children to prevent maternal and child mortality, fight malnutrition, stunting, wasting, anaemia and disease prevention through vaccines. Importance of programmes like Public Distribution System (PDS), Mid-day Meal Scheme, POSHAN Abhiyan and the role of Aganwadis and ASHA workers are also covered. Only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and become a Swasth or healthy India. The campaign will continue to cover issues like air pollutionwaste managementplastic banmanual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene

World

19,89,21,889Cases
6,44,02,340Active
13,02,83,678Recovered
42,35,871Deaths
Coronavirus has spread to 194 countries. The total confirmed cases worldwide are 19,89,21,889 and 42,35,871 have died; 6,44,02,340 are active cases and 13,02,83,678 have recovered as on August 3, 2021 at 3:55 am.

India

3,17,26,507 30,549Cases
4,04,9588,760Active
3,08,96,354 38,887Recovered
4,25,195 422Deaths
In India, there are 3,17,26,507 confirmed cases including 4,25,195 deaths. The number of active cases is 4,04,958 and 3,08,96,354 have recovered as on August 3, 2021 at 2:30 am.

State Details

State Cases Active Recovered Deaths
Maharashtra

63,15,063 4,869

78,700 3,650

61,03,325 8,429

1,33,038 90

Kerala

34,25,473 13,984

1,65,834 2,057

32,42,684 15,923

16,955 118

Karnataka

29,08,284 1,285

24,045 123

28,47,627 1,383

36,612 25

Tamil Nadu

25,63,544 1,957

20,385 139

25,09,029 2,068

34,130 28

Andhra Pradesh

19,70,008 1,546

20,582 437

19,36,016 1,968

13,410 15

Uttar Pradesh

17,08,500 24

646 18

16,85,091 42

22,763

West Bengal

15,29,295 575

10,803 171

15,00,331 734

18,161 12

Delhi

14,36,401 51

538 44

14,10,809 95

25,054

Chhattisgarh

10,02,458 236

1,918 1

9,87,012 234

13,528 3

Odisha

9,79,737 1,032

13,318 820

9,60,386 1,785

6,033 67

Rajasthan

9,53,704 16

241 9

9,44,509 25

8,954

Gujarat

8,24,922 22

251 3

8,14,595 25

10,076

Madhya Pradesh

7,91,862 17

132 7

7,81,217 10

10,513

Haryana

7,69,956 14

703 12

7,59,614 25

9,639 1

Bihar

7,24,917 37

401 34

7,14,872 71

9,644

Telangana

6,45,997 591

8,819 54

6,33,371 643

3,807 2

Punjab

5,99,162 32

473 31

5,82,395 63

16,294

Assam

5,68,257 1,275

12,429 213

5,50,534 1,469

5,294 19

Jharkhand

3,47,223 23

239 15

3,41,855 38

5,129

Uttarakhand

3,42,198 37

574 35

3,34,261 71

7,363 1

Jammu And Kashmir

3,21,725 118

1,254 43

3,16,090 73

4,381 2

Himachal Pradesh

2,06,369 208

1,304 75

2,01,543 132

3,522 1

Goa

1,71,295 90

1,027 16

1,67,118 72

3,150 2

Puducherry

1,21,059 54

944 38

1,18,320 92

1,795

Manipur

99,872 541

9,814 591

88,480 1,120

1,578 12

Tripura

79,026 304

3,104 12

75,167 292

755

Meghalaya

65,939 350

5,843 200

58,987 537

1,109 13

Chandigarh

61,960 6

33 3

61,116 3

811

Arunachal Pradesh

48,565 305

3,508 167

44,823 469

234 3

Mizoram

40,111 748

12,316 127

27,642 618

153 3

Nagaland

28,004 59

1,300 44

26,130 99

574 4

Sikkim

26,880 126

3,323 131

23,211 256

346 1

Ladakh

20,345 5

57 0

20,081 5

207

Dadra And Nagar Haveli

10,650

15 9

10,631 9

4

Lakshadweep

10,207 12

79 4

10,078 8

50

Andaman And Nicobar Islands

7,539

6 1

7,404 1

129

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