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Second human trials of Russia's COVID-19 vaccine to start in UAE

October 12, 2020
Trials for the Russian adenovirus-based vaccine are set to begin in the United Arab Emirates, the Abu Dhabi Media Office announced on Monday. — WAM photo
Trials for the Russian adenovirus-based vaccine are set to begin in the United Arab Emirates, the Abu Dhabi Media Office announced on Monday. — WAM photo

ABU DHABI — Trials for the Russian adenovirus-based vaccine are set to begin in the United Arab Emirates, the Abu Dhabi Media Office announced on Monday.

The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Russia's sovereign wealth fund, is partnering with Aurugulf Health Investment on the UAE trials of the vaccine, which was developed by the Gamaleya National Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation.

The vaccine, named Sputnik V, was first licensed by Russian authorities for domestic use in August and is currently being tested on 40,000 volunteers in Moscow.

The UAE trials will be conducted by the Department of Health — Abu Dhabi, under the supervision of the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention, with medical protocols handled by Abu Dhabi's public health provider, the Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA).

Volunteers for the UAE trial will be medically supervised for 90 days after taking the vaccine.

The UAE trials form part of the third phase of the trial. Results from the first two stages of the trial were published in the leading medical journal The Lancet and showed a stable humoral and cellular immune response had been achieved in 100 percent of volunteers, with no serious adverse events recorded.

Commenting on the development, UAE Health Minister Abdul Rahman said: "The UAE is committed to the global fight against Covid-19. We are pleased to support this process and welcome partnerships between UAE organizations and international players to enable promising solutions and progress."

"The results of the UAE trial will be combined with the results of the of the trial in Russia and other countries," Kirill Dmitriev, head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) said in the statement, adding that interim results will be published before the end of November.

Plans to launch Phase III trials of Sputnik V in India suffered a setback last week after India's drug regulator said early-stage trials — already conducted in Russia — must be done locally first too. — Agencies


October 12, 2020
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