The Russian Health Ministry, in a written statement, confirmed that they have begun the clinical trial of a vaccine against the global pandemic Covid19 which has by far infected close to 5 million people worldwide. The statement read that the two forms of vaccine (liquid and powder) has been developed by Moscow based Gamaleya Scientific Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology. The vaccine will be tested on two groups of volunteers which involves 38 people each.
As per leading Russian news agency TASS, the two groups of volunteers are formed by military personnel and civilians. They have been selected to test the efficiency of the coronavirus vaccine which is in the test phase. As per the Director of Gamaleya Scientific Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology, Professor Alexander Gintsburg, the trials will take around 1.5 months to confirm the results. The participants will be receiving two jabs in an interval of 21 days and they will be isolated at two Moscow hospitals.
The director had earlier said that the mass vaccination against the disease might begin in Russia by this fall and the process might take up to nine months to complete. It is a difficult time to be running a clinical trial and hence unprecedented measures have been taken in that regard for ensuring the safety of the participating patients. The participants have to spend two weeks mandatory quarantine in a sanatorium for observation.
In a statement made by Gintsburg in the previous week, he had revealed that he and other researchers had tried the vaccine on themselves first before starting the human trials. He further told that none of them experienced any side effects as. While he didn’t mention the number of people who had tried the vaccine alongside him, he mentioned that everyone was alive and doing well. In the statement given to RIA Novosti, Gintsburg had said that he and his team didn’t intended to test the vaccine but were merely looking to protect themselves with the vaccine.
“It’s not a trial. It’s self-defense in order for us to continue working (on the vaccine). Losing a staffer (to the virus) would delay the work. Knowing what they’re developing, they consciously took this step. And so did I,” Gintsburg had said to AP.
In a turn of events, the country’s Association of Clinical Research Organizations had accused the Russian authorities of rushing the clinical trials for Covid19 vaccine. In a statement released by the association, it condemned the actions of the researchers as violation to the very foundation of clinical research as well as to the Russian law and universally accepted regulations about clinical trials.
The statement released by Gintsburg stated that the vaccine has already been tested on small and large animals and as many as seven research facilities are currently working on making this successful.