HCMC – Human trials of Vietnam’s second Covid-19 vaccine—Covivac—produced by the Khanh Hoa-based Institute of Vaccines and Medical Biologicals (IVAC), is expected to begin late this month, two months earlier than initially planned.
Duong Huu Thai, head of IVAC, said the institute would submit documents to the Ministry of Health’s ethics council so that the council can assess the quality and efficacy of the vaccine, the local media reported.
This will be the second Vietnam-made Covid-19 to be tested on humans after Nanocovax of Nanogen Pharmaceutical Biotechnology JSC.
IVAC’s Covid-19 vaccine has proven to be safe on animals, such as mice and rabbits. Therefore, IVAC suggested the Ministry of Health allow the human trials of its vaccine to begin in January.
The institute has the necessary infrastructure, experience and equipment to produce flu vaccines, which can be used to produce the Covid-19 vaccine in a large capacity. It will come up with more plans and arrange capital for the trial.
According to Thai, the institute started researching the Covid-19 vaccine in May 2020 and expected to complete trials within 18 months.
The human trials of Covivac on people will include three phases, with the first one being expected to end in April 2021. If successful, the vaccine will be launched in the market at the end of this year, Thai added.
As planned, IVAC will coordinate with the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology and the Hanoi Medical University to conduct human trials of Covivac.
During the first phase, 125 volunteers will be divided into three groups to receive different doses.
Volunteers, who are healthy people aged from 18 to 59 and do not suffer from any underlying health conditions, will be injected one microgram or three micrograms of the vaccine. Each volunteer will be injected with the vaccine twice, with the shots being 28 days from each other.
They will be closely monitored following the injection.
The institute has prepared to deal with the worst, Thai said.