The drug regulator of the India approved the first DNA vaccine of the world against coronavirus for emergency use. It’s about the ZyCoV-D, of three doses, which prevented symptomatic disease in 66% of those inoculated, according to a study by the manufacturer Cadila Healthcare.
The firm assured in international media that it plans to manufacture up to 120 million doses of the second local vaccine of India per year and explained that while the DNA sera previous ones have worked in animals, they had not done it in humans.
So far, India has administered more than 570 million doses from Covishield, Covaxin and Sputnik V. 13% of adults have been inoculated with the complete scheme and 47% received at least one vaccine since the beginning of the campaign in January.
In accordance with Cadila Healthcare, the DNA vaccine It was tested on 28,000 volunteers and has proven to be effective. Meanwhile, the third phase of clinical trials was carried out at the peak of the second hello mortal of the virus. The manufacturer believes that this reaffirmed its “effectiveness against mutant strains”, Especially the Delta variant, highly infectious and transmissible.
How this DNA vaccine works
According to scientists, ADN and the ARN they are basic components of life. They are molecules that carry the Genetic information that is transmitted from parents to children. Like other vaccines, a DNA vaccine, once administered, teaches the immune system of the body to fight the real virus.
ZyCoV-D, they said from the lab, “uses plasmids or small DNA rings They contain genetic information to apply the pinprick between two layers of the skin. Plasmids carry information into cells to produce the protein Spike, which the virus uses to adhere and enter human cells ”.
However, most vaccines, especially those of MRNA, instruct the body to produce a fragment of the spike protein so that it can activate the immune system of a person, so that this generates antibodies and teaches their body to fight the virus.
Now, Why is this vaccine different? This is the first DNA vaccine human against SARS-CoV-2. In the United States, this type of serum is being tested in human clinical trials. It also serves to treat certain types of Cancer and also him HIV.
“Unlike the others, this vaccine is applied with a needleless injector disposable. It uses a narrow stream of the liquid to penetrate the skin and apply the puncture to the appropriate tissue, “said its creators.
In that sense, Gagandeep Kang, a virologist and member of the Royal Society of London, said: “If it provides good protection, this is something India will be proud of.”
Among its advantages, figure that they are “Cheap, safe and stable”, according to scientists. In addition, they can be stored at higher temperatures than the rest, between 2º and 8 ° C. According Cadila Healthcare, their vaccine demonstrated “good stability to 25°C for at least three months ”, which facilitates its conservation and distribution.
However, many scientists do not trust these vaccines. About, Kang argued: “The problem is that work well in animals, but they don’t end up offering the same protection level of immune response in humans ”.
Jeremy Kamil, a virologist at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in Shreveport, said: plasmid DNA vaccines have been tested in the past. We know that it is very difficult to introduce plasmid DNA into the nucleus of human cells, especially in adults ”.
The biggest drawbacks of ZyCoV-D the thing is requires three doses and, in addition, it needs to reach the nucleus of the cell to be effective and offer protection against the coronavirus, something that does not happen with mRNA sera, such as Pfizer O Modern.