Safety and immunogenicity of BBV152 (COVAXIN) SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine: Part 1- Vaccine basics

Nucleic Acid-Based Vaccines

The principles for both DNA and RNA approaches are similar in nature. The in vitro model for this technology lies in the transformation of cells in culture with a plasmid that directs the synthesis of a vaccine antigen. After cells in vivo take up nucleic acid encoding vaccine antigens, the antigens can be secreted or associated with the cell surface in a way that triggers both humoral or cellular immune responses.

A comparison of the three types of vaccines is given in Table 1.

PropertyLive Attenuated Virus VaccineInactivated Virus VaccineDNA Vaccine
Route of administrationInjection, inhalation, or oralInjectionInjection, gene gun
Amount of virus in vaccine doseLowHighNil
Number of dosesUsually SingleMultipleSingle, or in prime-boost regimen
Need for adjuvantNoYesNo
Duration of immunityMany yearsMore limited, several yearsNot known
Antibody responseIgG, IgA (if mucosal route)IgGIgG
Cell-mediated responseGoodGenerally modestGood
Heat labilityYes, for most virusesNoNo
Interference by prior antibodyYesUsually noNo
Side-effectsOccasional, local, or systemicOccasional, localUncertain
Reversion to virulenceRareNoNo
Use in pregnant womenUsually not advisedYesYes
Potential hazardsContaminating virusesVaccine-enhanced diseaseNot known yet
Table 1. Comparison of vaccine types


Plotkin’s Vaccines, 7th Edition

Fenner and White’s Medical Virology, 5th Edition

1 thought on “Safety and immunogenicity of BBV152 (COVAXIN) SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine: Part 1- Vaccine basics

  1. Pingback: Safety and immunogenicity of BBV152 (COVAXIN) SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine: Part 3- Study Results | communitymedicine4all

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.