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Russia presents 1,000 doses of Sputnik V vaccine to Vietnam

Jasmine Le Jasmine Le

lehang1997hanu@gmail.com

March 17, 2021 | 07:38

Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev on Tuesday has handed over a batch of Sputnik V vaccine to Vietnam on President Vladimir Putin’s decision.

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A box of Sputnik V (Photo: Sputnik)

As reported by VNE, Patrushev made the donation during his two-day visit to Hanoi for Russia-Vietnam security consultations on March 16-17.

The Sputnik V doses, which must be refrigerated at minus 18 degrees Celcius, have been transferred to a cold storage facility at the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology for preservation, according to Dang Viet Hung, head of the International Cooperation Department under the Health Ministry.

One official from the Health Ministry who wants to stay anonymous said the batch contains 1,000 doses.

Vietnam last month approved Russia's Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccines for use in emergencies.

Last year, Deputy Health Minister Tran Van Thuan said Vietnam ordered to buy Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccine from Russia but he didn't reveal the specific figure, as reported by VNE.

The mass vaccination in Vietnam began on March 8, and so far nearly 16,000 medical staff and other frontline workers in 12 localities have received their first shot of the AstraZeneca vaccine developed by the British-Swedish company in collaboration with Oxford University.

Some of them suffered from anaphylaxis but returned to stable health soon after.

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A medical specialist holds a vial of the Sputnik V vaccine against the coronavirus in a department store in Moscow, Russia, January 18, 2021 (Photo: Reuters)

Sputnik V has been approved for use in over 50 countries. Clinical trial results published in the Lancet Journal show its efficacy reaches 91.6 percent, making it the third vaccine worldwide to be over 90 percent effective against the novel coronavirus. The preliminary result also proves the vaccine is highly effective after the second dose and generates good immune response in those over 18 years of age.

Last December, Belarus became the first nation in the world to approve Russia’s Sputnik V. In Europe, where the vaccination campaigns have fallen behind due to vaccine shortage, medical authorities are starting to license Sputnik V. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) on March 4 spoke highly of the vaccine. In southeast Asia, Sputnik V has been authorized in Laos and Myanmar.

Sputnik V is expected to work by preparing the body to defend itself against infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus. This virus uses proteins on its outer surface, called spike proteins, to enter the body’s cells and cause COVID-19.

Sputnik V is made up of two different viruses belonging to the adenovirus family, Ad26 and Ad5. These adenoviruses have been modified to contain the gene for making the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein; they cannot reproduce in the body and do not cause disease. The two adenoviruses are given separately: Ad26 is used in the first dose and Ad5 is used in the second to boost the vaccine’s effect.

Once it has been given, the vaccine delivers the SARS-CoV-2 gene into cells in the body. The cells will use the gene to produce the spike protein. The person’s immune system will treat this spike protein as foreign and produce natural defenses − antibodies and T cells − against this protein.

If, later on, the vaccinated person comes into contact with SARS-CoV-2, the immune system will recognize the spike protein on the virus and be prepared to attack it: antibodies and T cells can work together to kill the virus, prevent its entry into the body’s cells and destroy infected cells, thus helping to protect against COVID-19, according to EMA.

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Jasmine Le