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Zydus Needle-Free Corona Vaccine Zycov-D: The World’s First DNA-Based Vaccine

Zydus Cadila, a leading Indian pharmaceutical company, has developed the world’s first needle-free COVID-19 vaccine, ZyCoV-D, which has recently received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) [1]. The vaccine is built on a DNA platform and is administered using The PharmaJet®, a needle-free applicator that ensures painless intradermal vaccine delivery [1]. This article provides an in-depth analysis of the Zydus needle-free corona vaccine, including its development, efficacy, administration, and safety.

Development of ZyCoV-D

ZyCoV-D is a three-dose vaccine that uses a plasmid DNA platform to produce the spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus [2]. The vaccine is designed to elicit an immune response against the spike protein, which is responsible for the virus’s entry into human cells [2]. The vaccine’s development involved preclinical studies followed by clinical trials that included over 28,000 volunteers across India [3]. The interim results of the clinical trials showed that the vaccine was safe and well-tolerated, with no serious adverse events reported [2]. The vaccine also demonstrated an efficacy rate of 66.6% against symptomatic COVID-19 cases [2].

Efficacy of ZyCoV-D

The efficacy of ZyCoV-D has been a subject of debate since the vaccine’s approval. While the vaccine’s efficacy rate of 66.6% may seem lower than other COVID-19 vaccines, it is important to note that the vaccine was tested during the second wave of the pandemic in India, when the Delta variant was dominant [4]. The vaccine’s efficacy against the Delta variant is yet to be determined, but the company has stated that it expects the vaccine to be effective against the variant [4]. Moreover, the vaccine has shown promising results in preventing severe disease and hospitalization, which are the primary goals of any COVID-19 vaccine [4].

Administration of ZyCoV-D

ZyCoV-D is administered using The PharmaJet®, a needle-free applicator that delivers the vaccine through the skin [1]. The applicator uses a high-pressure stream of fluid to penetrate the skin’s outer layer and deliver the vaccine into the intradermal tissue [5]. The needle-free delivery system eliminates the need for needles and syringes, making the vaccine administration painless and reducing the risk of needle-stick injuries [5]. The vaccine can be stored at 2-8°C, making it easier to transport and store than other COVID-19 vaccines that require ultra-cold storage [3].

Safety of ZyCoV-D

ZyCoV-D has been found to be safe and well-tolerated in clinical trials, with no serious adverse events reported [2]. The vaccine’s safety profile is expected to be similar to other DNA vaccines that have been approved for human use [6]. However, as with any new vaccine, long-term safety data is yet to be established. The company has stated that it will continue to monitor the safety of the vaccine through post-marketing surveillance [3].

zycov d prons and cons

As with any vaccine, ZyCoV-D has its own set of pros and cons. Here are some of the potential advantages and disadvantages of this vaccine:


Needle-free delivery: ZyCoV-D is administered using a needle-free injector called the PharmaJet, which is a more comfortable option for individuals who are afraid of needles.

Efficacy: The clinical trials for ZyCoV-D have shown promising results in terms of efficacy. In a phase 3 clinical trial, the vaccine was found to be 66.6% effective against symptomatic COVID-19 cases.

Safety: The clinical trials have also shown that ZyCoV-D is generally safe and well-tolerated, with few side effects reported.

Production and distribution: ZyCoV-D is easier and less expensive to manufacture than some of the other COVID-19 vaccines, and it can be stored at normal refrigerator temperatures, which makes it easier to distribute.


Limited data: Although the clinical trials have shown promising results, there is still limited data available on the long-term safety and efficacy of ZyCoV-D.

Emergency use authorization: ZyCoV-D has been authorized for emergency use in India, but it has not yet been fully approved by regulatory agencies like the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Availability: ZyCoV-D is currently only available in India, and it may be difficult to obtain in other parts of the world.

Age restrictions: The vaccine has been authorized for use in individuals aged 12 years and above, which means it is not yet available for younger children.

It is important to discuss the potential benefits and risks of any vaccine with a healthcare provider to determine the best course of action for an individual’s specific situation.

delivery or distribution of the Zydus Cadila’s needle-free COVID-19 vaccine, ZyCoV-D.

ZyCoV-D is an indigenously developed DNA vaccine for COVID-19 that received emergency use authorization (EUA) from the Drug Controller General of India in August 2021. The vaccine is administered via a needle-free injector and is the first such vaccine to receive EUA in India.

Regarding the delivery or distribution of the vaccine, it is up to the Indian government and the vaccine manufacturer to decide on the distribution strategy. However, reports suggest that the vaccine will initially be supplied to the Indian government for its vaccination program and may be available in private hospitals and clinics at a later stage.

As for the coverage or number of people vaccinated with ZyCoV-D, there is no specific information available yet, as the vaccine has just received EUA and has not yet been widely distributed.


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