Russia's Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University (Sechenov University) has reportedly completed clinical trials of a coronavirus vaccine candidate developed by Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology.
The first group of volunteers who were administered the coronavirus vaccine candidate will be discharged this week, reported Sputnik, citing the university’s Institute for Translational Medicine and Biotechnology director Vadim Tarasov.
The group, which involved 18 volunteers, was given the jab in mid-June.
A few days later, a second group comprising 20 healthy volunteers was administered the vaccine candidate at the university’s Practical Research Centre for Interventional Cardiovasology.
The second group of volunteers is expected to be discharged on 20 July, as per Tarasov.
The volunteers involved in the clinical trial are of both the sexes and are in the age group of 18-65 years.
According to Sechenov University, the volunteers were administered a lyophilised vaccine, which is a powder from which a solution is made for intramuscular injection.
The Russian university reported that some of the volunteers in the clinical trial did experience headaches and increased body temperature. However, the symptoms were fully resolved within 24 hours post-vaccination.
Tarasov, has been quoted by the publication, to have said: “Sechenov University has successfully completed tests on volunteers of the world’s first vaccine against coronavirus.”
Alexander Lukashev, who is the director of Sechenov University’s Institute of Medical Parasitology, Tropical, and Vector-Borne Diseases, said that the goal of this stage of the clinical trial was to establish the safety of the coronavirus vaccine candidate in humans, which he claimed to be a success.
Lukashev has been quoted by Sputnik to have said: “The safety of the vaccine has been confirmed. It corresponds to the safety of those vaccines that are currently on the market.”
Gamaleya Institute, which is a Moscow-based epidemiology research centre, is planning further development of the vaccine candidate as per Lukashev. This will include the complexity of the epidemiological situation with the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes the disease and also the potential of ramping up production.
The coronavirus vaccine candidate from the Gamaleya Institute is also being studied at Burdenko Military Hospital in Moscow. However, this clinical study is using the liquid form of the drug candidate.
The Russian Ministry of Health anticipates finalising the clinical trials and take a decision on the effectiveness of the vaccine before autumn.