The initial safety data on the combined use of AstraZeneca vaccine (developed with the University of Oxford) and the first component of Sputnik V vaccine (Sputnik Light) has been obtained in the Republic of Azerbaijan.
In December 2020, Gamaleya Reasearch Institute, the Russian Direct Investment Fund, AstraZeneca and R-Pharm Group signed a memorandum of intent on cooperation in vaccine development.
The clinical trial to test safety and immunogenicity of the combination of COVID-19 vaccine AstraZeneca and the first component of the Sputnik V vaccine in Azerbaijan started in February 2021. To date 50 volunteers have got both shots, the enrollment is ongoing. The interim analysis of data demonstrates a favourable safety profile of the “vaccines cocktail” with no serious adverse events or cases of COVID-19 reported after both doses.
Clinical trials to test a mix of two shots are conducted in several countries as part of a global program. Volunteers are being vaccinated in UAE, the trials have recently been approved in Russia and Belarus.
The initial data on the immunogenicity of the combined use of the AstraZeneca vaccine and the first component of the Sputnik V vaccine is expected in August in the Republic of Azerbaijan.
Vasily Ignatiev, CEO of R-Pharm Group:
“The initial results obtained at times when the Delta strain is spreading are very important for assessing the safety and early efficacy of the vaccine combination. We will continue our research and analysis with the prospect of a publication in a peer reviewed journal.”
Irina Panarina, General Manager, AstraZeneca Russia and Eurasia:
“A heterologous prime-boosting when components of different vaccines are being administered to a patient is one of the most promising vaccination regimens to study. It is becoming more relevant now when the new COVID-19 strains are spreading and there’s also a growing need for revaccination. That is why the results of the study can be of great importance for those countries where both COVID-19 vaccine AstraZeneca and the Sputnik V vaccine are approved.”
Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF):
“As new strains of coronavirus emerge, partnerships between vaccine manufacturers and combining different vaccines play a crucial role in fighting the pandemic. Considering the high efficacy of the heterologous boosting (“vaccine cocktail”) approach, RDIF was the first to initiate partnerships with other coronavirus vaccine manufacturers. The first partnership of this kind was a clinical trial program with AstraZeneca. We expect it to be a success in Azerbaijan and other countries, which will help to accelerate the vaccine rollout and protect people around the world. It is important for us to test the combination of the first component of Sputnik V and the vaccines from other manufacturers for a more effective fight against emerging new strains of coronavirus.”
About COVID-19 vaccine AstraZeneca
The vaccine was co-invented by the University of Oxford and its spin-out company, Vaccitech. It uses a replication-deficient chimpanzee viral vector based on a weakened version of a common cold virus (adenovirus) that causes infections in chimpanzees and contains the genetic material of the SARS-CoV-2 virus spike protein. After vaccination, the surface spike protein is produced, priming the immune system to attack the SARS-CoV-2 virus if it later infects the body.
About Sputnik Light
Sputnik Light is the first component (recombinant human adenovirus serotype number 26 (rAd26)) of Sputnik V – the world’s first registered vaccine against coronavirus. An efficacy of almost 80% is higher than that of many two-dose vaccines. Sputnik Light has proven effective against all new strains of coronavirus, as demonstrated by the Gamaleya Center during laboratory tests. Sputnik Light is compatible with standard vaccine storage and logistics requirements. The Sputnik Light vaccine is based on a well-studied human adenoviral vector platform that has proven to be safe and effective, with no long-term side effects, as confirmed in over 250 clinical trials conducted globally over the past two decades (while the history of use of human adenoviruses in vaccine development started in 1953).