UAE to host Covid-19 vaccine tests

24 June 2020
A Chinese pharmaceutical company and its Abu Dhabi partner aim to have an effective vaccine that enters the market by the end of 2020

A Chinese pharmaceutical company has partnered with an Abu Dhabi company to test a vaccine for the Covid-19 virus in the UAE.

The trial will be the world’s first phase 3 clinical trial of a Covid-19 inactivated vaccine, and is due to take place after a clinical cooperation agreement was signed between Sinopharm China National Biotec Group (CNBG) and Abu Dhabi-based artificial intelligence and cloud computing firm Group 42 (G42).

The two companies aim to accelerate the development of a safe and effective vaccine that could enter the market by the end of 2020 or early 2021.

G42 will lead the clinical trial operations in the UAE under the supervision of the Department of Health of Abu Dhabi.

In a statement on its website, G42 said the clinical trial process is usually divided into three phases: “The first phase mainly looks into the safety of the vaccine. Phase 2 evaluates immunogenicity and explores the immunisation process in a limited number of individuals. Phase 3 considers the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine in a larger population sample.

"If a vaccine is confirmed safe and effective throughout the entire clinical trial process, the test is considered successful, and the vaccine enters into the large-scale manufacturing phase.”

The Sinopharm CNBG inactivated vaccine has already passed phase 1 and 2 clinical trials without showing any serious adverse reactions, with 100 per cent of the volunteers generating antibodies after two doses in 28 days.

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