Novovax's Covid Vaccine Shows 90 Per Cent Efficacy In Late-Stage Study; Will Be Produced By SII In India As Covovax

Novovax's Covid Vaccine Shows 90 Per Cent Efficacy In Late-Stage Study; Will Be Produced By SII In India As CovovaxCovid-19 vaccine. (Representative image)

Vaccine manufacturer Novovax has announced that its Covid-19 vaccine has shown 90 per cent efficacy in late-stage study, Associated Press has reported.

This study has been carried out in the US and Mexico and involved 30,000 participants out of which 20,000 received vaccine doses with a three week gap and the rest received placebos.

In total, 77 Covid-19 cases were reported from the group out of which only 14 were recorded from the group which received the vaccine. None of the 14 developed any serious symptoms.

Novovax's vaccine is easy to supply and store and is expected to play a key role in boosting vaccine supply in developing nations. It can be stored in standard refrigerators.

The company's production ambitions had been hit by shortages of raw materials, such as 2,000-liter plastic bags used to grow cells for vaccine production. This has cut the company’s expected production numbers by about half.

Novavax said it does not expect to hit its production target of 150 million shots per month until the fourth quarter of 2021, later than its previous forecast of sometime in the third quarter.

Novavax has a commercial arrangement with Serum Institute of India (SII) to manufacture and distribute 750 million doses to low-and middle-income countries. This will be the second Covid-19 vaccine manufactured by SII after Covishield licensed from Oxford and AstraZeneca.

In March, SII had announced that the launch of the Covid-19 vaccine Covovax developed jointly by the company and Novavax is likely to be delayed to September in the country.

The ICMR and SII are jointly performing a phase-2/3 observer-blind, randomised, controlled study to determine the safety and immunogenicity of Covovax in Indian adults.