Dawn of hope: Global cooperation in COVID-19 vaccine development

BEIJING, Sept. 4, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — A news report by China.org.cn on international cooperation for vaccine R&D and China’s recent efforts:

On Aug. 20 and 21, China National Biotec Group, a subsidiary of China National Pharmaceutical Group, signed cooperation agreements with Peru, Morocco and Argentina to conduct Phase III clinical trials of an inactivated COVID-19 vaccine.

The results of its Phase I and II clinical trials in June showed no severe adverse reactions and all those administered with the vaccine produced high titers of antibodies. On June 23, the vaccine candidate started its Phase III clinical trial in the United Arab Emirates. It is the world’s first Phase III trial of an inactivated vaccine, and also the first overseas clinical trial of a Chinese-developed vaccine.

In contrast with recombinant COVID-19 vaccines, inactivated vaccines use killed virus to help the human body develop an immune response.

China hopes to develop a safe and effective vaccine against COVID-19 as fast as possible. The country will make its vaccine a global public good, and do its utmost to improve affordability and availability of the vaccine. Phase III clinical trials can only be clearly assessed by administering the vaccine in risky areas. The outbreak in China is now under control, which provides the country with no suitable condition to conduct a Phase III clinical trial. Therefore, international cooperation is essential to such clinical trials. A large amount of data from multiple regions will also greatly accelerate development of the vaccine.

Researchers around the world are racing to develop a COVID-19 vaccine, with more than 170 candidates now being tracked by the WHO. Potential vaccines developed by the U.K., the U.S. and Australia have all entered Phase III clinical trials. This is definitely good news for all.

Apart from vaccine development, Chinese enterprises are also actively working with their international counterparts to put in place the relevant industrial chains. A Chinese pharma company has signed a letter of intent with its German partner to help the latter complete clinical trials of potential COVID-19 vaccines in China and obtain marketing approval.

In order to guarantee equal access to COVID-19 vaccines for every country, the WHO launched the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility (COVAX) initiative. What China is doing is in essence the same with COVAX.

The COVID-19 situation varies from country to country, but an effective vaccine will offer protection for all. No country can develop a successful vaccine without international cooperation. In this global battle against the coronavirus, the dawn of hope has come.

China Mosaic

Dawn of hope: Global cooperation in COVID-19 vaccine development

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SOURCE China.org.cn

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