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person holding white and black labeled bottle

By Tharini Ilanchezhian

The Drug Controller General of India, DCGI has given approval to a study to be conducted at the Christian Medical College (CMC),Vellore on mixing the doses of the covid-19 vaccines Covishield and Covaxin, official sources said on Wednesday.

The trial involves a total of 300 volunteers. "The research study will be held at Christian Medical College, Vellore", said Dr. V K Paul, Niti Aayog on a press meet that happened on Tuesday. The objective of this study is to determine whether a person can be given vaccination shots of two different vaccines, one with the Covishield and the other shot with Covaxin to complete the inoculation process.

On the other hand, a recent study conducted by the Indian Council of Medical Research, ICMR involving 98 people, out of whom 18 people who had accidentally received Covishield as the first and the Covaxin as second dose responded better than the people who received both shots with the same vaccine, in Uttar Pradesh.

This illustrated that the mix of the two vaccines resulted in a better immunogenicity than two doses of the same vaccine. The study has another important revelation that says, the side and adverse effects of the mix of vaccines is same as that of the same vaccine regiment.

man in black jacket and pants sitting on chair Photo by Swarnavo Chakrabarti on Unsplash

This study can possibly boost the confidence of the general public since the nation-wide vaccination program has stepped into the fourth month of its existence and the fact of mixing the different doses created a sense of panic in the public. This could potentially cause higher vaccine hesitancy in the future.

On this eventual backdrop, due to the urge of necessity, it had become almost an indispensable duty for the government to conduct this study. Including the 18 individuals who had received the first dose of Covishield and the second dose of Covaxin, 40 other recipients of two doses of Covishield and 40 recipients with two doses of Covaxin were recruited for this study.

Experts view the mixing of the two vaccines as a best way to deal with the current vaccine shortage that the country is facing on a huge scale. There are also arguments that say there must be multi-level studies that should be undertaken in order to come to a definitive conclusion about the mixing of the vaccines.

Covishield, the Oxford University Astra Zeneca shot and Covaxin, developed by the Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech International Ltd., are the first two vaccines that were approved by DCGI, the drug controller of India in the nation-wide drive that started in the wake of the pandemic.


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