What is a nasal COVID-19 vaccine? Is it better than the jab and how does it work
New Delhi, June 08: In his address to the nation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that research on a nasal COVID-19 vaccine is underway in the country.
He also said that if this research turns out to be successful, the vaccination process would further speed up. Currently there are three vaccines in India-Covishield, Covaxin and Sputnik V. All three are administered in the form of a jab.
What is a nasal vaccine?
A nasal vaccine is administered through the nose and does not require a needly. The nasal vaccine induces immunity through the inner surface of the nose, the surface which naturally comes in contact with several microbes that are air-borne.
Scientists had last year developed a vaccine against COVID-19 that could be administered in one dose through the nose. It was found to be effective in preventing infections in mice susceptible to COVID-19.
Many thought that it would lead to protective candidates that could curb COVID-19.
In a study published in the journal, Cell, it was noted that unlike the other vaccines against COVID-19, the one administered via the nose targets the initial site of the infection and causes a more widespread immune response.
Phase 1 trial:
The Indian drug regulator CDSCO's expert panel had in January this year recommended granting permission to conduct the phase 1 of the trials of an intranasal vaccine against COVID-19 developed by Bharat Biotech. "A nasal vaccine candidate has been identified. It has come for consideration to the drug regulator for phase 1 and phase 2 clinical trials," NITI Aayog Member V K Paul said at a press conference.
Single dose vaccine:
Chairman of Bharat Biotech, Krishna Ella said that the company is focusing on an intranasal vaccine as existing vaccines require two dose intramuscular injections. A country like India needs 2.6 billion syringes and needles, which could add to pollution.
One drop of the vaccine inn each of the nostrils is sufficient Ella also said.