• The Sputnik V vaccine is the first foreign-made vaccine to be approved in India and is currently being distributed in the country by Dr Reddy’s Laboratories.
By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Ayshee Bhaduri, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

UPDATED ON JUN 04, 2021 04:10 PM IST

Russia may start trials on a vaccine combining its Sputnik V vaccine and various Chinese shots in Arab countries, the head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) told a news agency on Friday, according to Reuters. “These are the big manufacturers and it may be that we will start the first trials in Arab countries combining Sputnik with a number of Chinese vaccines,” Kirill Dmitriev was quoted as saying by Interfax news agency.

A combination trial using the Sputnik V vaccine and the AstraZeneca jab has already been conducted and no negative side effects have been reported so far, Russian news agency Interfax reported.

Dmitriev also said Russia expects the World Health Organization (WHO) to approve the Sputnik V vaccine within two months. He said the European Medicines Agency (EMA) which is also reviewing Sputnik V “was provided with all basic existing information, there is no critical remarks for now at all”.

RDIF helped finance the production of the Sputnik V vaccine and also markets the shot around the world, and so far it has been approved for use in over 60 countries worldwide. EMA, WHO and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are yet to approve the jab.

The Sputnik V vaccine is the first foreign-made vaccine to be approved in India and is currently being distributed in the country by Dr Reddy’s Laboratories. On Thursday, the Serum Institute of India (SII) applied for a test license to manufacture Sputnik V in the country.

RDIF claims that Sputnik V demonstrates the efficacy of 79.4 per cent when administered in a single dose and 91.6 per cent when administered in two doses. However, many US universities have asked students to get re-vaccinated with a WHO-approved vaccine if they have been administered Sputnik or India’s Covaxin, before colleges in the US open for the fall semester, news agency ANI reported on Friday.

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