23rd July 2024

Blood sample with respiratory coronavirus positive

China has given the green light for researchers to begin human safety tests of an experimental coronavirus vaccine by China. This is meant to develop a shot against the COVID-19 disease, which has been declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organisation.

According to China’s ruling Communist Party’s Daily Report, on Tuesday, researchers at China’s Academy of Military Medical Sciences, affiliated to the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA), received approval to launch early-stage clinical trials of the potential vaccine, starting this week.

Details in the Chinese clinical trial registration database show that a “Phase 1” test that will examine whether experimental shot is safe in humans aims to recruit 108 healthy people to take part in the test. The exercise started on March 16 and is expected to end on December 31, 2020.

The trial is being conducted by China’s Academy of Military Medical Sciences and the Hong Kong-listed biotech firm CanSino Biologics.

First test

Meanwhile, scientists in the United States said on Monday that clinical trials had begun for a vaccine developed by the country’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and the U S biotech firm Moderna.

The vaccine, known as mRNA-1273, was first tried on 43-year-old Jennifer Haller, an operations manager at a small tech company. “We all feel so helpless. This is an amazing opportunity for me to do something,” Haller said, adding that her two teenagers “think it’s cool” that she’s taking part in the study.

NIAID Director Anthony Fauci has said “finding a safe and effective vaccine to prevent infection with SARS-CoV-2 is an urgent public health priority,” adding: “This Phase 1 study, launched in record speed, is an important first step toward achieving that goal.”

So far, 45 volunteers, aged 18 to 55, will get two doses of the vaccine over a span of about six weeks, according to the U S National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Experts at the World Health Organisation (WHO) say they do not expect any fully tested and approved vaccine to reach the market until the middle of next year.

Statistics

So far, 201,530 persons have tested positive for the novel coronavirus disease. Out of the number 82,034 people have recovered from the disease, with 8,007 deaths.

In sub Saharan Africa, Burkina Faso yesterday announced its first death from the disease, which is also the first known fatality in the sub region.

“We recorded the death overnight of a female patient, aged 62, who suffered from diabetes and was in intensive care,” Burkina’s national coordinator for responding to the virus, Professor Martial Ouedraogo, told the press.

Seven cases in Ghana

So far, seven cases have tested positive in Ghana, with the latest case being a 35-year-old male Ghanaian citizen who returned to Accra from France within the past 14 days.

Government says “this is another imported case”, adding that the “case is being managed in isolation and he is in stable condition.”

Meanwhile, 136 suspected cases of COVID-19 tested by the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) and Kumasi Centre for Collaborative Research (KCCR) in Ghana have all tested negative.

The 136 suspected cases are part of a total of 143 cases tested in the country as of March 17 2020.

 

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