COVID-19: The situation on ground (6 July 2021)

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India’s fight against the COVID-19 pandemic continues

The deadly second wave of the pandemic seems to have tapered off significantly. Active cases and fatalities have dropped across most of India. However, there are some states such as Kerala, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Sikkim, and Tripura where high COVID-19 infection rates continue to remain a cause for concern.

Fresh cases and deaths contribute to India’s COVID-19 tally

India recorded 34,703 new COVID-19 cases on 5th July 2021, taking the total number of infections to 3.6 crores. On the same day, 553 people succumbed to the contagion bringing the death toll to nearly 4.3 lakh. Currently, the country has an active caseload of 4,64,357.

COVID-19 vaccination picks up pace

As of 5th July 2021, more than 35.75 crores doses of the three COVID-19 vaccines - Covishield, Covaxin, and Sputnik V have been administered in India. On the same day, over 45 lakh people aged 18 years and above received their first or second dose of the vaccine.

Single vaccine dose enough for COVID survivors against Delta variant: Study

A study has revealed that COVID-19 survivors who have received one or both doses of Covishield exhibit higher protection against the Delta variant when compared to individuals who have never been infected but are fully vaccinated. The finding suggests that even one dose of vaccine can protect a COVID-recovered patient against the Delta variant.

Moderna, Pfizer vaccines help T-cells recognize and fight COVID-19 variants: Study

A new study has found that CD4+ "helper" T cells and CD8+ "killer" T cells from people who have recovered from COVID-19 or received the Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines can still recognize mutated forms of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. It noted that both vaccinated individuals and recovered patients had cross-reactive T cells that could target the virus variants.

Bharat Biotech shares final phase III clinical trial data of Covaxin

Vaccine manufacturer Bharat Biotech has released the final analysis results of Covaxin’s Phase III clinical trial data. According to the company, the vaccine has demonstrated 77.8% efficacy against symptomatic COVID-19 and 93.4% against severe disease. It added that the vaccine is 65.2% effective against the deadly Delta variant.

Zydus Cadila seeks DCGI approval for COVID-19 vaccine

Drugmaker Zydus Cadila has applied to the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) seeking emergency approval for its ZyCoV-D vaccine, the world’s first plasmid DNA-based COVID-19 shot. The application follows the release of the interim results from Phase-III trials in which the 3-dose vaccine demonstrated an efficacy of 66.6%.

J&J single-dose COVID-19 vaccine may be available in India by this month

The Indian government is reportedly discussing the procurement of single-dose COVID-19 vaccines, with Johnson & Johnson (J&J). According to reports, the vaccine could arrive as early as this month. However, only limited doses will be made available initially. Later, the vaccine would be license manufactured by Biological E in India.

Covovax vaccine may be introduced in India between July and September

The Covovax vaccine developed by US biotech company Novavax may be cleared for use in India between July and September. According to the CEO of Novavax, the vaccine would cost a "low single dollar" per dose. In India, the vaccine is being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII).

Moderna vaccine may be available in India within a few days

India has given restricted emergency approval to Moderna’s mRNA COVID-19 vaccine. The country is likely to get a few million vaccine doses donated by the US government through the international COVAX arrangement in the next few days. The vaccines will be imported into India by the Mumbai-based pharma major Cipla.

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