According to a study released Saturday by Public Health England, the Pfizer & Biontech vaccine provided 93 percent protection two weeks after inoculation against the strain B.1.1.7, which was first detected in Kent, England.
The protection against the B.1.617.2 strain reported from India was 88%.
The study also showed that two doses of AstraZeneca vaccine protected 60 per cent and 66 per cent respectively against the Indian and British variants of the virus.
British health officials stressed that the study may underestimate the effectiveness of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Because of the short follow-up time, the AstraZeneca vaccine may take several weeks to reach maximum efficacy after a second dose.
As the virus continues to spread, a new strain of the virus in India is threatening to unblock the virus in Britain.
The preventable nature of the virus will determine whether the unblocking program continues.
The British government had originally planned to lift the seal on June 21. The cabinet will meet on June 14 to decide whether to do so as planned.
British Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the trial showed both vaccines were equally effective against the Indian strain and he believed the UK’s roadmap for unlocking the virus would remain unchanged for the future.
A total of 257,299 new coronavirus cases were confirmed in India in the past 24 hours, according to the latest data released by the Ministry of Health on Monday. The total number of new coronavirus cases has reached 26,289,290 in the past 24 hours, down from the single-day record of 400,000 in early May.
There were 4,194 new deaths, bringing the total number of deaths to 295,525.
The New York Times quoted experts as saying that the drop in the number of new infections reflects the success of blockades in cities such as New Delhi and Mumbai, but the virus is still spreading to rural areas and other places.
At the same time, the death toll has remained high, which may mean that people infected earlier in the year are dying, even as new cases in cities decline.