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Daily News Analysis

ZyCoV-D vaccine          

29th December, 2021 Health


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  • As the Omicron variant has rapidly reached nearly every corner of the Earth, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced that the nasal vaccination and the world's first DNA vaccine against COVID-19 will be available for inoculation soon.


About ZyCoV-D vaccine

  • It is the world’s first and India’s indigenously developed DNA based vaccine for COVID-19 to be administered in humans including Children and adults 12 years and above.
  • Developed in partnership with the Department of Biotechnology, under the ‘Mission COVID Suraksha’ and implemented by BIRAC, ZyCoV-D has been supported under COVID-19 Research Consortia through National Biopharma Mission for Preclinical studies.
  • This 3 dose vaccine which when injected produces the spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and elicits an immune response, which plays a vital role in protection from disease as well as viral clearance.
  • The plug-and-play technology on which the plasmid DNA platform is based can be easily adapted to deal with mutations in the virus, such as those already occurring.


What is a DNA-based vaccine, and how does it work?

  • In its most basic form, DNA stores the memories of all biological activities.
  • It also contains hereditary or genetic information about how the body should react in the event of infection.
  • The DNA-based vaccinations operate by transferring a genetically modified blueprint of viral genes into small DNA molecules for injection into persons being vaccinated.
  • The ZyCoV-D was created by inserting a fragment of virus DNA into the human body, which, once inside, causes the virus to manufacture a crucial component that the immune system can recognise and so encounter.


Efficacy rate of the DNA vaccine

  • In clinical trials, the vaccination was proven to be 67 per cent effective against symptomatic COVID-19.
  • It demonstrates that DNA vaccinations work and can aid in the control of the pandemic.
  • Vaccines based on DNA are also being developed for a variety of other disorders.


About DBT

  • The Department of Biotechnology (DBT), under the Ministry of Science and Technology, promotes and improves biotechnology development in India through its development and implementation in agriculture, healthcare, animal sciences, the environment, and industry.



  • A non-for-profit Public Sector Enterprise, Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC), has been set up by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT)
  • It acts as an interface agency to enhance and encourage the evolving biotechnology industry to implement strategic research and development activities in regards to the product development needs of t