Is there a COVID-19 vaccine? When will it be ready?
Coronavirus Vaccine: China has raised hopes for a possible cure as a Chinese team has begun its first clinical trial of coronavirus vaccine. The vaccine has reportedly been developed by a team led by senior bioengineer Chen Wei.
The reports of the human trial surfaced after photos and videos of volunteers taking part in the trial became viral on social media. As per the Chinese Clinical Trial Registry, the first phase of the clinical trial to test the coronavirus vaccine was registered on March 17.
The Chinese had been working on the vaccine since January 2020, when the outbreak first alarmed the world. The vaccine has been jointly developed by the Academy of Military Medical Sciences of the People’s Liberation Army, the Institute of Biotechnology and CanSino Biologics Inc.
Coronavirus Vaccine trial in China
China is conducting a clinical trial on 108 healthy adults between the age of 18 and 60 years in two different medical facilities in Wuhan. The trial is, however, is expected to take time and is only expected to be completed by December. This would be China’s first test of its coronavirus vaccine on humans.
Coronavirus vaccine trials in the US
The United States has also begun the clinical trial of a possible coronavirus vaccine called mRNA (messenger ribonucleic acid). The vaccine has been designed to protect against the COVID-19 infection. The first phase of the trial has begun in Seattle’s Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute (KPWHRI). The trial will be conducted on 45 healthy volunteers between the age of 18 and 55 years. It is expected to take around 6 weeks. The first volunteer has already received the vaccine.
More Coronavirus Vaccines in development?
According to the World Health Organization, around 20 more coronavirus vaccines are currently in development. The United Kingdom has also reportedly developed a vaccine and they will soon begin testing it on animals. The human trials are expected to begin in April.