India’s ZyCoV-D is the world’s first DNA COVID-19 vaccine. With research growing globally in the field of vaccines to combat COVID-19, India has taken a step forward by developing DNA COVID-19 Vaccine.
A Successful DNA vaccine is the Future of Vaccinology
ZyCoV-D is the first DNA COVID-19 vaccine produced by Indian Pharmaceutical firm Zydus Cadilla. They claim that their vaccine remains stable at 25 degrees Celcius for at least 3 months. This makes vaccine storage and transport easy. The human trials involving 28,000 subjects showed an efficacy rate of 64% with ZyCoV-D. This DNA vaccine contains circular DNA called Plasmid. This encodes the spike protein of coronavirus. Plasmid enters the nucleus and is converted to mRNA.
This mRNA is further translated to viral spike protein. The body’s immune system recognizes the spike protein as a pathogen and immune cells are produced. This guides immune system to get activated on future encounters with the virus. Plasmid degrades within weeks to months, but immune remains the same.
The ZyCoV-D requires 3 doses, unlike other vaccines that require 1 or 2 doses. Despite more doses, it is easy to deliver as vaccine administration is needle-free. ZyCoV-D is manufactured in such a way that it can be deposited under the skin.DNA vaccines in general are easy to manufacture. They are more stable than mRNA vaccines and cost-effective.