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Thursday, 10 September 2020

4 part of BCG vaccine trial infected

Ravinder Saini

Tribune News Service

Rohtak, September 9

Four persons, including two doctors and a nurse, undergoing a clinical trial to test the efficacy of tuberculosis vaccine in warding off Covid-19 have contracted the virus at the Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (PGIMS) here.

The trial was initiated at the PGIMS on May 1 and the vaccine was administered to 174 attendants of Covid patients, including close contacts, doctors, nurses, ward boys and sanitary workers.


Dr Savita Verma, Principal investigator of trial

Results only after study

The results will be out after the trials, so it will be inappropriate to comment on the initial results right now.


All participants are under the observation of a team of doctors to find out the effects of the Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccine on them.

One of the doctors infected said: "I was administered the vaccine in June. My duty was to take care of the Covid patients but I contracted the virus in August. I wasn't required to be admitted to the hospital and recovered while in home isolation."

Another doctor who was part of the trial tested positive for the virus but he remained asymptomatic and got cured within a week.

Dr Savita Verma, principal investigator of the research and professor in the Department of Pharmacology, said some participants had contracted Covid-19.

"The trial is aimed at ascertaining the rate of Covid infection after BCG vaccination and its severity," she said.

Dr Ramesh Verma, co-investigator and professor in the Department of Community Medicine, said the trial involving 6,000 participants was being conducted at 40 medical institutions across the country.

"All 174 participants here have been registered with a mobile app to receive feedback about their health at regular intervals. They have been asked to inform the doctors if they get fever and other symptoms. Once the observation period is over, they will be tested to see if there is any increase in the levels of antibodies due to the vaccine," said Dr Verma

The BCG vaccine enhanced immunity and had the ability to induce potent protection against infectious diseases, he added.

from The Tribune

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