In a clinical trial conducted in Azerbaijan, a combination of the AstraZeneca vaccine and the first component of the Sputnik V vaccine (Sputnik Light) showed a high immunogenicity profile.
According to the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, along with AstraZeneca and R-Pharm, the two vaccines combined have shown promising immunogenicity results.
“Vaccine cocktail” or heterogenous boosting approach was the foundation of Sputnik V, developed by Russia. As a result of this approach’s success in creating a longer and more durable immunity against the coronavirus, RDIF formed partnerships with other vaccine producers to conduct joint studies of a combination of the first component of Sputnik V with other vaccines, which are currently in development.
As of December 2020, the first partnership was with AstraZeneca and R-Pharm, for which clinical trials were conducted in February 2021 in Azerbaijan.
At this point in time, 64 volunteers have been vaccinated with the combination vaccine. Antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 virus spike protein (S-protein) were detected in all 20 participants, according to preliminary data.
There were no serious adverse events or coronavirus infections after vaccination, according to an interim analysis of the data released by the RDIF.
Several countries are conducting clinical trials of a combination of vaccines as part of a global programme. Volunteers have also been vaccinated in the United Arab Emirates and Argentina, and regulatory approval has been granted in Russia and Belarus to conduct clinical trials of the vaccine.
It was earlier reported that India is considering to give an approval for mixing of Russia’s Sputnik V and Oxford–AstraZeneca’s Covishield, which is being manufactured by Pune-based SII, for Covid-19 vaccination. Once allowed, the people will be free to choose the first dose of one vaccine and the second dose of another.
According to a report published in Mint, the Covid-19 working group of the National Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (NTAGI) has been mulling to give permission of mixing vaccines, but with a restriction that both doses will have to be from same platforms.
The report further said that the panel is discussing based on “growing evidence” that mix and match of vaccines is “not only safe but also produces a strong immune response”. The panel believes that it will also resolve the issue of vaccine supply shortage in the country.