The Ministry of Health announced this Thursday (25) an agreement to acquire 20 million doses of Covaxin, a vaccine still under tests developed by the Indian laboratory Bharat Biotech.
The acquisition is made through a partnership with the Brazilian company Precis Medicamentos, which had done the work of approximation with the Indian laboratory. According to the statement, the agreement provides for the payment of R $ 1,614 billion for the purchase of the immunizer, which will come ready from India, allowing instant distribution.
The forecast of Ministry of Health is that delivery is split over the next three months. The first 8 million doses will arrive in Brazil in two batches in March, between 20 and 30 days after signing the contract. In April, another 8 million doses will arrive in the country, between 45 and 60 days after the signature, and in May the remaining 4 million will arrive, with delivery scheduled for 70 days after the contract is closed.
The question about Covaxin will be regulatory. The vaccine has not yet passed the very important phase 3 of tests, which serves to assess whether the compound is really capable of protecting those who were vaccinated. Without these data, it will be very difficult for National Agency of Sanitary Surveillance (Anvisa) provide any type of authorization for use in Brazil.
It is possible that these results will not take long to come out. According to the Hindustan Times, Bharat Biotech Prometheus that the first interim analysis of efficacy results should be ready in two weeks. Precis, a Bharat partner, also closed a partnership with Instituto Israelita Albert Einstein to carry out a phase 3 study of Covaxin specifically in Brazil.
Although there is no result of effectiveness, Covaxin at least did well in the previous phases of testing. The tests from the previous steps showed positive results, demonstrating safety and the ability to produce antibodies and T cells against Sars-Cov-2.
Covaxin is a vaccine that uses a classic platform to produce immunity against Covid-19. Such as CoronaVac, already in distribution in Brazil as a result of a partnership between the Butantan Institute and the Sinovac laboratory, the vaccine uses inactivated viruses to activate the immune system. This means that the coronavirus it is "dead", removing its ability to replicate itself in the body, but it is still recognized by the body, which can create defenses in a safe situation and prepare itself against a real infection.