In what could be the biggest breakthrough in the search to find a vaccine for Coronavirus or COVID-19, Russia's Health Ministry's will register the COVID-19 vaccine it claims to have created on August 12. It will be the first vaccine to reach the registration stage in the world. This vaccine will be used for a nationwide immunization program that will be launched in October by the government.
The vaccine was developed by the Gamelei Center in Moscow. The trials of this vaccine started on June 18 at Sechenov University in Russia's capital. 38 volunteers participated in the tests and all of them developed immunity to the dreaded infection that has caused havoc across the world. There were no side effects on the test subjects.
"The registration of the vaccine developed at the Gamelei Center will take place on August 12. Now the last stage, the third, is underway. This is the testing part and is extremely important. We have to understand that the vaccine itself must be safe," Deputy Health Minister of Russia Oleg Gridnev told mediapersons on Friday.
The vaccine was developed on the basis of Adenovirus which causes the common cold. The proteins of this vaccine replicate the COVID-19 proteins and cause the body to launch an immune reaction, or, in the words of Vadim Tarasov, one of the top experts involved in the making of this medicine, "an immune response similar to that caused by the coronavirus itself."
Due to the persistent suspicion of Russian government's claims on various issues, many experts around the world are not confident about the claims by the world's first vaccine against Covid-19. . However, the Russians are invoking the example of the space race during the Cold War between erstwhile Soviet Union and the US to back their claims.
"Americans were surprised when they heard Sputnik's beeping, it's the same with this vaccine. Russia will have got there first," Kirill Dmitriev, head of Russia's sovereign wealth fund said in an interaction with an American channel.
The Russians also claim to be ahead of the curve in the hunt for a vaccine due to their health fraternity's long experience in working on development of medicines for other pandemics, most notably Ebola and MERS.