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How it was developed, how many countries have approved it: the Russian vaccine in 10 questions – health news


The fact that the Sputnik-V vaccine will be launched after the Chinese Sinovac and the USA / German made BioNTech in Turkey turned the eyes to the Russian vaccine. The average efficiency rate of the vaccine developed in Russia was announced as 90 percent. Two doses of the vaccine, administered 42 days apart, are currently approved in 61 countries. Here are those who are curious about the Sputnik V vaccine …

1-HOW WAS IT DEVELOPED?

According to the news of Hürriyet newspaper, it was announced that the main trade name of the Sputnik-V vaccine, ‘Gam-Covid-Vak’, was developed approximately three months after the World Health Organization announced the beginning of the pandemic on March 12, 2020. Accordingly, the vaccine is a joint product of the Gamalei Research Institute and the 48th Biology Research Center of the Russian Defense Ministry. The development of the vaccine was funded by the Russian Direct Investment Fund. According to the Gamalei Institute, 1.5 billion rubles (about 1.6 million TL) were spent on R&D. The institute that developed a vaccine against the Sars virus in 2002 adapted it to the new virus, so the cost was also limited. It was tested on 38 volunteers on June 16, 2020. On August 11, Russian leader Vladimir Putin announced that the first corona virus vaccine was registered in Russia.

2-WHAT KIND OF VACCINE?

Sputnik-V is an adenovirus vector vaccine, just like the Sinovac, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson vaccines. In other words, it provides the development of immunity by transmitting the COVID-19 genetic information to the human body through the inactive carrier imitation virus that does not contain real corona virus. The most important difference of Sputnik-V vaccine from other vector vaccines is that different adenoviruses are used in the first and second vaccination phases. This is done to maintain strong immunity, according to the Gamalei Institute.

3- HOW LONG IS THE IMMUNITY DURATION?

The second vaccination is given 42 days after the first vaccination. The strongest immunity to the corona virus occurs two weeks after the second dose is administered. Although not confirmed by the World Health Organization, according to the Russian side, the person vaccinated with Sputnik-V becomes immune to coronavirus for at least one to two years.

4- WHAT IS THE ACTIVITY RATE OF THE VACCINE?

The efficiency rate of the Sputnik-V vaccine is not clearly revealed due to the short administration time as in all other vaccines. The Gamalei Institute made 91 percent effective statements first, then 93.5 percent and finally 95 percent. The average effectiveness rate given by independent biologists to the Sputnik-V vaccine is also around 90 percent.

5- HOW IS IT STORED?

Fine adjustments are being made to the Sputnik-V vaccine. In August last year, a rule was set that the vaccine should be transported to the place where the vaccine will be made at minus 18 degrees. Before three months later, new touch-ups were made in the vaccine and it was announced that the transplant temperature could be between +2 and +8 degrees. Thus, it has been made suitable for conventional cooling systems in logistics.

6- IS IT TRUSTED?

The fact that Russia shared only the data announced by itself about the Sputnik-V vaccine with the scientific world also raised doubts. The sharing of the data of the Russian side of the UK-based “The Lancet” medical journal on February 2, 2021 gave the vaccine a reputation. However, there were rumors that Moscow was printing the Sputnik-V article in the magazine with money. As a result, in a second article, trying to find answers to all the questions, it was recorded that the Russian vaccine was efficient and the success rate was 91.6 percent. It was declared that it protected 100 percent from severe illness.

7- HOW MUCH IS THE PRICE?

Since November 2020, when the Sputnik-V vaccine became a commercial product, its price has changed twice. While the Russian Ministry of Health announced that the vaccine will be made free of charge to the public in the country, the maximum price will be 1,942 rubles (approximately 215 TL) in the market release. Due to the increase in production in February, the price was reduced a little and it was decided that the new price for the vaccine will be maximum 866 rubles (approximately 82 TL). The Direct Investments Fund, which markets the vaccine outside of Russia, was also given bargaining authority.

8- HOW IS EUROPE’S APPROACH?

The introduction of the Russian vaccine to the international market also divided the European Union. While the EU was late for vaccination, EU countries such as Hungary, Slovakia and Austria and Serbia sought Sputnik-V. Thereupon, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) examined the vaccine for the approval process. However, no decision is expected before the end of the year. As uncertainty continues, Germany is trying to reserve 50 million Russian vaccines.

9- HOW MANY PEOPLE IN RUSSIA HAVE BEEN VACCINATED WITH SPUTNIK-V?

According to the latest figures, the number of people who had the vaccine in Russia, where 145 million people live, is around 12 million (8 percent according to the total population). With this trend, it seems impossible to reach the critical 70 percent rate of vaccination in Russia by the end of the year.

10- HOW MANY COUNTRIES HAVE APPROVED? WHO WILL PRODUCE?

According to the April 13 statement of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, the number of countries that approved the use of the Sputnik-V vaccine was recorded as 61. Turkey gave its approval for the use of the Russian vaccine on April 30, 2021. Most of those who approve the Russian vaccine consist of third world countries such as South America, Arab countries and the Far East, which act independently from the USA and the EU. It was announced that the Russian vaccine will be produced by the Viscoran company in Turkey.

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