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Video: Pfizer And BioNTech Begin Human Trial Of Coronavirus Vaccine
Pfizer and BioNTech begin human trial of coronavirus vaccine
If the tests are successful, the new vaccine could be ready for emergency use as early as September.
The American drug manufacturer Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech have announced the start of trials of a new coronavirus vaccine in volunteers. They are among the world's fastest growing vaccines that are effective and safe. The vaccine uses mRNA technology that has the potential to "train" a healthy immune system to produce antibodies to fight infection.
In April, the first trials took place in Germany, 12 healthy volunteers received the vaccine, and in total it is planned to attract at least 200 participants. In the United States, 360 volunteers will receive the vaccine during the first phase of trials. The study will be conducted at New York University's Grossman School of Medicine, the University of Maryland School of Medicine, the University of Rochester Medical Center, and Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center.
Study participants will be divided into groups to compare four vaccine options. Doctors will closely monitor the volunteers' blood antibody levels, liver enzymes, and other indicators of possible side effects. By testing multiple vaccine variants in parallel, the researchers hope to shorten the time it takes to collect enough data for a filing with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Once the vaccine is approved, Pfizer and BioNTech will be able to distribute the first few million doses to those most in need of vaccination. However, more research may be required to obtain regulatory approval for widespread use of the vaccine. In any case, manufacturers intend to work at an accelerated rate.
“We have to think differently, we have to think faster than before. If we face a second wave of coronavirus infection in October at the same time as the flu, things will be much worse than what we are experiencing now,”said Dr. Mikael Dolsten, Pfizer's Chief Scientist.
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