The Ministry of Ayush’s Central Council of Research in Ayurvedic Science (CCRAS) have commenced a trial to evaluate if Ashwagandha, a popular herb of the Ayurvedic system of medicine, can help improve the protection offered by anti-Covid vaccines.
For the trial, the enrollment of volunteers has begun in Pune and Mumbai and will soon commence in other centres such as Delhi, Nagpur, Jaipur, Belagavi and Hassan, Dr Arvind Chopra, chief clinical coordinator for the trial, told The Indian Express.
As many as 1200 participants are being enrolled in the standard controlled drug trial, Dr Chopra said.
Under the trial, participants will be randomised soon after vaccination and administered either Ashwagandha or a placebo. They will then be closely monitored for 28 weeks during which protective antibodies and immune cell responses will be measured at several points. In addition, breakthrough infections will be evaluated. “Participants will be monitored daily for Covid symptoms and/or drug side effects using a special mobile app developed by Centre for Rheumatic Diseases (CRD), Pune,” Dr Chopra, who is also the director of the centre, said.
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