COVID Vaccine Study: AstraZeneca & Pfizer Effective Against Variant First Detected In India

New Delhi: A study by Public Health England (PHE) has found both Oxford-AstraZeneca (Covishield in India) and Pfizer vaccines to be highly effective against the COVID-19 variant first detected in India.

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Two doses of either vaccine will provide same degree of protection against the variant identified in Indian as they do against the UK variant of coronavirus.

According to the PHE study, these two vaccines will help in preventing hospitalization and deaths.

While the Pfizer vaccine was found to be 88% effective in preventing the disease from the India-detected variant two weeks after second dose, it showed 93% effectiveness in combating the UK variant.

On the other hand, the study found AstraZeneca to be 60% effective against the India-detected variant and 66% against the UK variant.

Also Read: Oxford-AstraZeneca Vaccine 100% Effective In Preventing COVID-19 Deaths: US Trial

The researchers observed that since AstraZeneca vaccine’s second dose was rolled out in the UK and elsewhere much later than Pfizer’s, data showed it takes longer to reach maximum effectiveness vis-à-vis the former (or Covishield).

The researchers studied data from all age groups starting from 5 April, thus covering the period since the B.1.617 variant was first identified in India.

Also Read: US Vaccines Effective Against Covid Variant Found In India, Say Top Officials

The study’s lead author Dr Jamie Lopez Bernal, a consultant medical epidemiologist at PHE, said that they had higher confidence in the data from first vaccine dose.

“There are bigger numbers that have been vaccinated with one dose. So I think we classify that as moderate certainty around the first dose, but low levels of confidence around the second dose,” he explained.

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