- There have been claims that combining two different Covid-19 vaccinations will provide better protection against the coronavirus, which is still evolving and mutating.
- The Subject Expert Committee has recommended that a study be done on the combination of Covaxin and Covishield; however, the DCGI has not yet given its final clearance.
- In India, Covishield, Covaxin, and Sputnik V vaccination doses are currently being administered.
According to reports, an expert panel of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) has advised that a clinical trial be conducted on the combination of COVID-19 vaccines Covaxin and Covishield.
According to reports, the CDSCO’s Subject Expert Committee (SEC) has recommended that Christian Medical College (CMC) Vellore be granted permission to perform a clinical trial combining the two COVID-19 vaccines which are manufactured in India by Serum Institute of India (SII) and the second being Bharat Biotech.
As per a source quoted by the Press Trust of India (PTI), “After lengthy deliberations, the SEC (subject expert committee) recommended granting clearance to CMC, Vellore for launching the phase-4 clinical research encompassing 300 healthy volunteers for mixing of COVID-19 vaccines Covaxin and Covishield”.
It was further explained that “The aim of the trial is to see if a person can get two separate vaccine shots — one of Covishield and one of Covaxin — to finish the inoculation course”.
This will be the first mix-and-match study of COVID vaccinations conducted in India. Many health professionals have suggested that studies be undertaken on combining COVID vaccine doses, as this may result in a better immune response.
Previously, the mix-and-match method was utilised to combat Ebola and AIDS.
According to the sources, the council of experts also reviewed Biological E’s application to conduct Phase 2/3 clinical trials of its COVID-19 vaccine in children aged 5 to 17 years. The SEC also examined the ongoing phase 2/3 clinical trial on adults’ safety and immunogenicity data (after dosage 1).
The PTI, quoting the source further added, “After deliberation, the committee suggested that the CDSCO (Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation) receive the safety and immunogenicity results from phase 2 of the Phase 2/3 clinical trial on adults”.
According to the source, Johnson and Johnson (J&J), a US-based pharmaceutical company, has withdrawn its proposal to undertake a Phase 3 clinical investigation of its single-dose COVID-19 vaccine in India.