Trial Of Coronavirus Vaccine Begins In US
US health officials made an announcement about start of the first human trial of a candidate vaccine against the new coronavirus in Seattle. This test is a ray of hope in the global fight against the disease.
But the vaccine has to pass more trials in phases before it is termed safe and it could take from 12 to 18 months before it is made available for public.
US National Institutes of Health (NIH) in collaboration with Cambridge, Massachusetts based biotechnology company Modern has been developing a vaccine called mRNA-1273 to defeat COVID-19.
The trial involves 45 healthy adult volunteers between the age group of 18 to 55 years. They will be kept under observation for a period of 6 weeks and the trail on the first volunteer would start on Wednesday. Funding for the trial was provided by the Oslo-based Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI).
COVID-19 has already infected more than 175,000 people and claimed over 7,000 lives so far. But there is no approved vaccine for this infection. Head of infectious diseases at the NIH said that finding a safe and effective vaccine to prevent infection was an urgent public health priority.
The Moderna vaccine will use a messenger RNA that contains the genetic information of the spike. The messenger will grow the spike inside the human body and elicit response without actually infecting a person with the full-blown virus. US-based Gilead Sciences has already developed an antiviral treatment called remdesivir and it is in the final stages of developing the vaccine.