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A booster shot of Sputnik-V specifically designed to counter the more lethal Delta variant of novel coronavirus will be available soon. The booster shot will be offered to other vaccine manufacturers, RDIF stated in a tweet.

Gamaleya, however, did not share the details about which manufacturers will receive these booster shots or how effective they will be against the Delta variant.

The Delta variant (B.1.617.2), first discovered in India, has been a menace around the world. It has been held responsible for rise in Covid-19 cases and deaths around the world. The devastating second Covid-19 wave in India has been attributed to this variant and has given rise to fears over a third wave. Manufacturers are trying to ascertain the efficacy of their Covid vaccines against this and other variants.

Sputnik V has been developed by Gamaleya National Center of Epidemiology and Microbiology with the backing of Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF). In April, the jab received emergency use authorisation in India, making it the third vaccine to be included in the nationwide incoulation drive. It was also the first registered vaccine against Covid-19 in the world.

The decision to provide the booster shot for Delta variant to other makers is not a surprising development. Sputnik V developers have been longstanding advocates of vaccine cocktails for improving efficacy. Gamaleya claims the jab iyself is the first Covid-19 vaccine cocktail as it uses heterogeneous boosting with 2 shots by 2 different adenoviral vectors Ad5 and Ad26.

Back in November 2020, Gamaleya had offered to share one of its two human adenoviral vectors with AstraZeneca to increase the efficacy of latter's Covid vaccine. Using two different vectors for two vaccine shots will result in higher efficacy than using the same vector for two shots, it had claimed.

The proposal had been accepted, before trials for the combined Sputnik-AstraZeneca vaccine were put on hold briefly towards the end of May. Earlier in June, news agency Reuters confirmed that the combined shot did not have any adverse effects on the test subjects.


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