Covovax gets WHO approval for emergency use
- World Health Organization has listed Covovax, produced by Serum Institute of India under the licence from Novavax, for emergency use.
- The ninth Covid-19 vaccine approved for emergency use is part of the COVAX facility portfolio and will be boosting efforts in vaccinating people, especially in lower-income countries.
WHO emergency use listing
- The emergency use listing (EUL) procedure assesses the suitability of novel health products during public health emergencies.
- The objective is to make medicines, vaccines and diagnostics available as rapidly as possible to address the emergency while adhering to stringent criteria of safety, efficacy and quality.
- The assessment weighs the threat posed by the emergency as well as the benefit that would accrue from the use of the product against any potential risks.
- Covovax, a subunit of the vaccine developed by Novavax and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), requires two doses.
- The vaccine is produced by creating an engineered baculovirus containing a gene for a modified SARS-CoV-2 spike protein.
- It is stable at 2 to 8 °C refrigerated temperatures.
- In addition to Covovax, India's Covishield, developed by the Serum Institute of India was issued EUL on 15 February 2021, while Covaxin by Bharat Biotech was given a nod on 3 November 2021.