Each of the three available vaccines provides at least a 90% protection, assures Professor Albert Rizvanov.
“There are currently three vaccines produced in Russia,” he says. “The undisputable leader is Gam-COVID-Vac, trademarked as Sputnik V, produced by Gamaleya Institute. The second one in order of registration is EpiVacCorona from Center of Virology and Biotechnology Vector. And the third one, now in late stages of clinical trials, is produced by Chumakov Federal Research Center. Which one of them is better? I always say – the one that we have on hand. At this moment, production volumes are not big. I think that it’s better to use the vaccine that’s available; vaccination benefits far outweigh any risks.”
The interviewee is convinced that all the vaccines are sufficiently safe and effective. Even if they cannot give absolute protection from the disease, at least they decrease the risk of severe complications.
“All three vaccines use different platforms. Sputnik V is based on adenovirus. This virus is a vector. It carries a single coronavirus gene encoding the hairpin protein S. This gene, when it enters the human body, leads to the synthesis of a protein that triggers an immune response. The EpiVacCorona vaccine is a peptide vaccine. It is created on the basis of artificially synthesized fragments of the coronavirus protein, when administered in a person, immunity to various antigens (fragments of the coronavirus) is developed. The Chumakov Center’s vaccine is based on an inactivated virus. A real virus is taken, killed, and then used to activate the immune system.”
All the vaccines are unequivocally proven to be effective during trials, says the scientist. He also mentioned that no serious side effects have been registered, aside from the usual ones – short-time fever, headache, or pain around the injection spot. Nevertheless, vaccination is not recommended for those who have recovered from coronavirus less than a month ago or have been in contact with an infected person in the last two weeks.
KFU’s Center for Precision and Regenerative Medicine, headed by Professor Rizvanov, is among the centers which offer antibody test to evaluate pre-vaccination and post-vaccination immunity statuses. In conclusion, the expert reminded that not long ago infectious diseases were the main culprits in human mortality rates, and vaccines have been able to reverse that in a historical feat.
Source text: Larisa Busil
Photos: Alexander Kuznetsov
Translation: Yury Nurmeev