Union Health Minister unveils world’s first intranasal COVID19 vaccine, iNNCOVACC
Union Health Minister Dr. Mansukh Mandaviya on 26 January unveiled world’s first intranasal COVID-19 vaccine, iNNCOVACC in New Delhi.
An overview of the news
The vaccine was launched in the presence of Dr. Jitendra Singh, Union Minister of State for Science and Technology (Independent Charge).
It is developed by Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL) in collaboration with Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance (BIRAC).
An initial manufacturing capacity of several million doses per year of the vaccine has been established, to be scaled up to one billion doses as needed.
iNCOVACC has been priced at Rs 325 per dose.
On September 9, 2022, Bharat Biotech's iNCOVACC, the world's first nasal COVID-19 vaccine, was approved for emergency use in adults.
On November 28, 2022, Bharat Biotech announced that the vaccine has been approved for restricted emergency use in adults.
About iNCOVACC Vaccine
Bharat Biotech's intranasal COVID-19 vaccine is a recombinant replicating adenovirus vectored vaccine.
A recombinant vaccine means that it has been manufactured using bacterial cells or yeast cells or parts of a virus to introduce viral proteins into the host.
It removes critical parts of the genome of SARS-CoV-2, so that the viral vector can no longer replicate.
Phase I, II and III clinical trials of the vaccine have yielded successful results.
The vaccine will be given intranasally through drops in the nose, a system that has been designed and developed to be cost-effective in low- and middle-income countries.
The maximum temperature range for storage and distribution of iNCOVACC is two to eight degrees Celsius.
Working of iNCOVACC
An intranasal vaccine stimulates a broad immune response by producing a wide range of antibodies including neutralising Immunoglobulin G (IgG) and mucosal Immunoglobulin A (IgA).
The vaccine also initiates T cell responses.
When the iNCOVACC vaccine is given to an individual, the immune cells in the body express the immobilized spike protein.
As a result, the body starts producing antibodies against the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2.
After a person is exposed to SARS-CoV-2, the immune system will block Covid-19 infection in both the upper and lower respiratory tract due to the presence of antibodies.
Therefore, iNCOVACC has the potential to block SARS-CoV-2 and prevent the transmission of Covid-19.
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