Coronavirus vaccine for children might be available for use in September or October this year, Dr Priya Abraham, the Director of Pune's (Indian Council of Medical Research) ICMR-National Institute of Virology (NIV) informed.
In an interview with an OTT channel of the Department of Science and Technology, Dr Abraham said, "Phase 2 and 3 trials of Covaxin are underway for children between 2-18 years. Hopefully, the results will be available soon, which will then be presented to the regulators. So, by September or just after it, we may have COVID-19 vaccines for children."
Further, she informed that apart from the Covaxin, Zyuds Cadila's vaccine trial for children is also underway. "Zydus Cadila's vaccine will be the first DNA vaccine available for use. Besides, there is Gennova Biopharmaceuticals Ltd's m-RNA, Biological -E vaccine, Serum Institute's Novovax and another interesting one is an intranasal vaccine by Bharat Biotech, which doesn't require a jab and can be delivered through nostrils," Abraham added.
Earlier in an interview with ANI, Dr Randeep Guleria, Director of AIIMS, on the COVID-19 vaccines for children had said, "Vaccines for children in India should come out now because trials are already underway for vaccines available in the country. Bharat Biotech's trials are in the final phase, and by September, we will have the data."
Talking about how effective the COVID-19 vaccine is on the Delta Plus variant, Dr Priya Abraham said, "Delta Plus variant is less likely to spread than the Delta variant, which is present in over 130 countries. In NIV, we have studied antibodies produced in vaccinated people and have checked them against this variant. The efficacy of antibodies against Delta reduces two-three folds. Yet, the vaccines are protective against the variants."
Saying that the WHO has put a momentary stop on the booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, she said, "Studies (on booster dose) have been going on overseas. At least seven different vaccines have been tried out for booster doses. The WHO has put a stop to it till more countries catch up with vaccination, but in the future, recommendations for booster dose will definitely come."
Recently, speaking about booster dose, Dr Gagandeep Kang, professor at Christain Medical College, Vellore, on Tuesday, had said that whether people will have more antibodies or will be better protected with the booster dose is still not known.