Two COVID-19 Vaccines Approved for Clinical Trials in China

National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) of China has approved two COVID-19 inactivated vaccines to go for a clinical trial.

These two vaccines were produced by the Wuhan Institute of Biological Products Co. Ltd of Sinopharm and Sinovac Research and Development Co. Ltd respectively.

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China’s Ministry of Science and Technology has established a group of experts who would contribute to the epidemic prevention and on measures to contain the virus. This group of 14 experts has devised a plan to tackle vaccine development based on five directions which included: inactivated vaccines, nucleic acid vaccines, genetic engineering subunit vaccines, vaccines using attenuated influenza virus as vectors and adenovirus vector vaccines.

They will be working on all five methods simultaneously until they find the most suitable means of tackling the virus.

An academic from China’s Academy of Engineering, Chen Wei suggested that COVID-19 is still a coronavirus despite the variation, which meant the mutual target antigen, pathogenesis and receptor would be identified quickly. Chen Wei’s team worked on developing an adenovirus vector vaccine, drawing on previous experience with the last epidemic crisis- Ebola. The team got approved for a clinical trial on 17th March.

Other teams focusing on other directions have also seen some progress in their vaccines.

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