There are reports in the media that the Drug Enforcement Agency of Pakistan is considering approving the emergency use of the Russian-made Sputnik V vaccine. DRAP spokesperson Akhtar Abbas Khan told Independent Urdu correspondent Mona Khan that the approval notice has not been issued yet, but it will be issued after an administrative explanation.
Earlier, Bloomberg reported that DRAP’s technical committee had cleared the vaccine and sent it to the registration board, which is considering approving it. Once approved, Sputnik would become the third vaccine against the coronavirus to be approved in Pakistan. Earlier, Pakistan had approved AstraZeneca and Chinese Sinopharm vaccines.
In early January, Russia wrote a letter to health officials in Pakistan expressing interest in selling its own Sputnik vaccine, claiming that the vaccine was cheaper than other countries’ vaccines and had been effective against coronavirus to about 91.4%.
Unlike US companies Pfizer and Moderna, the vaccine uses older technology. In contrast, Pfizer and Moderna vaccines do not contain the virus, but a portion of the corona virus’s genetic code (RNA) is injected into the body as a vaccine.
Another distinguishing feature of the Sputnik V is that it does not require a cold chain like American vaccines and can be stored at two to eight degrees Celsius. According to Bloomberg Vaccine Tracker, more than 65 million doses of the corona vaccine have been administered in 56 countries so far, with Israel leading the way and giving the corona vaccine to about 40% of its population. Is. The list of 56 countries also includes India, Bahrain, Panama, Oman, Turkey, and Serbia, but Pakistan is not currently included.
Why is the vaccine named after the rocket(Sputnik V)?
Russia has named the vaccine Sputnik V, which was the name of a Russian space rocket in Russia’s war with the United States during the Cold War, while V apparently refers to the English word Victory. Apparently, Russia wants to show by this name that it is on par with the Western countries, especially the United States, in the race for medical science as well as space technology.
Russia, like the space race, has overtaken the West in the race for the corona vaccine, as its vaccine was approved in August, while the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were approved in December.
Russia approved the vaccine in August, which was strongly criticized by medical scientists around the world because Russia approved it only after the first two stages (Phase 1 and Phase 2), whereas for any vaccine to get approval it is important to complete Phase 3 trial before administering the drug to the general population.
However, after this initial haste, the Gemalia Institute continued experiments on the vaccine and announced in a press release on November 24 that experiments on more than 40,000 people showed that the vaccine was 91.4% effective.
The institute also said that no unexpected side effects were observed during the experiments. So far, Russia, Belarus, Hungary, Argentina, and the United Arab Emirates have approved the vaccine.
How does the Sputnik V vaccine work?
Unlike US companies Pfizer and Moderna, the vaccine uses older technology. The Gemelia Institute took a virus that causes colds in humans and, after inactivating it, inserted the gene of the coronavirus into it, under which the coronavirus makes spike proteins.
When a vaccine based on this modified virus is vaccinated, the specific spike protein of the coronavirus causes the human body to feel that it has been attacked by the coronavirus and the immune system is activated.
Because the virus is ineffective, humans do not get sick, but antibodies are produced against the coronavirus, and it can be easily counteracted if the original virus attacks in the future. In contrast, Pfizer and Moderna vaccines do not contain the virus, but a portion of the corona virus’s genetic code (RNA) is injected into the body as a vaccine.