Researchers and pharmaceutical companies worldwide are racing against time to develop an effective and affordable vaccine against Coronavirus pandemic, a disease which has killed and crippled millions. A vaccine is likely to be ready for mass production and distribution anytime between end of 2020 to middle of 2021, according to the timelines committed by vaccine candidates which are in advanced stages of trials.
So far, only one vaccine has been approved. Sputnik V, developed by Gamaleya Research Institute in Moscow was approved by Russia’s health regulators on August 11. The vaccine is named after Sputnik 1, the first artificial Earth satellite launched in 1957. Sputnik V uses adenoviral vectors — human adenoviruses that have had their genetic material removed — that trick the recipient’s body into producing immune response. The UAE this week announced it would host phase III trials for this vaccine, the second trial after the emirates conducted trials for a Chinese vaccine.
The world is eagerly waiting for a vaccine as cases surge in several countries in Europe, North America and Asia. The pandemic is the biggest modern threat to economies, governance systems and the world order. New infections and fatalities continue to strain health infrastructure and impact daily lives. The global vaccine trials will hopefully soon provide a tool to wipe out the disease
These collaborative trials will benefit the UAE in many ways when vaccines are approved and are ready for distribution. Countries hosting trials will have a clear advantage in getting early access to the vaccine. By hosting two vaccine trials, the country has joined the global quest for an effective treatment. The trials, involving thousands of residents and citizens will be conducted under the of UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention.
The UAE has been chosen for Russian and Chinese vaccine trials as the country has world-class, health care infrastructure, excellent research eco system and a pool of volunteers. Another big advantage is diverse demography of the UAE, home to people from every part of the globe. The two trials demonstrate global health experts’ faith in the UAE institutions’ ability to maintain integrity of collecting and processing scientific data.
Building lasting defences against the virus
Already, 31,000 volunteers, including the UAE’s top health officials have received the Chinese vaccine as part of phase III trials. Encouraged by the results, the UAE leadership on September 15 allowed emergency use of the vaccine for front-line workers, including health care professionals and airport staff. Data collected from these trials and emergency usage will help the UAE in building lasting defences against the virus.
The world is eagerly waiting for a vaccine as cases surge in several countries in Europe, North America and Asia. The pandemic is the biggest modern threat to economies, governance systems and the world order. New infections and fatalities continue to strain health infrastructure and impact daily lives. The global vaccine trials will hopefully soon provide a tool to wipe out the disease.