Russia’s COVID-19 vaccines have proven effective against new variants of the coronavirus in trials, a scientist with Moscow’s consumer regulator said on Tuesday, after the agency reported its first cases of a variant first detected in South Africa.
President Vladimir Putin last month ordered a review to determine the efficacy of the three vaccines produced and registered in Russia against new variants spreading in different parts of the world. He said he wanted the results by March 15.
Consumer regulator Rospotrebnadzor said earlier on Tuesday it had identified the first two cases in Russia of the new variant of the coronavirus first detected in South Africa.
“In fact, trials have already been done in Russia and we can say with confidence that the (Sputnik V and EpiVacCoriona) vaccines registered in Russia also work against new strains,” Alexander Gorelov, deputy head of research at Rospotrebnadzor’s Institute of Epidemiology, said on state television.
Gorelov gave no details on trials that had tested vaccines against variants first discovered abroad.