Home International WHO in conversation with Russia for more vaccine information, says expert

WHO in conversation with Russia for more vaccine information, says expert

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World Health Organization does not have sufficient information at this point to make a judgment on the Russian vaccine.

In this handout photo provided by the Russian Direct Investment Fund, a new vaccine is on display at the Nikolai Gamaleya National Center of Epidemiology and Microbiology in Moscow, Russia. Picture: AP

A SENIOR expert of the World Health Organization (WHO) said that it is currently in conversation with Russia to get additional information about the Covid-19 vaccine that Russia will start the production of soon.

Dr Bruce Aylward, senior adviser to WHO’s director-general, told a press conference on Thursday that WHO does not have sufficient information at this point to make a judgment on the Russian vaccine, Xinhua news agency reported.

He told reporters that with the co-ordination of WHO, there are altogether nine vaccine candidates that are going through Phase 2 or 3 trials, but the Russian vaccine is not one of them.

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on Tuesday that the country has registered the world’s first registered vaccine against the novel coronavirus.

Later on Wednesday, Russian Health Minister Mikhail Murashko said that the country will start the production of the vaccine within two weeks. Murashko also said that doubts about the effectiveness of the vaccine are unfounded.

In related vaccine news, Reuters reported that US drug developer Novavax said the UK would buy 60 million doses of its coronavirus vaccine candidate, NVX-CoV2373, for a Phase 3 clinical trial in the country.

The company and the UK government will collaborate for the trial to assess the efficacy of the vaccine in the UK population, Novavax said in a statement, but did not disclose any financial details of the agreement.

The trial will be a study in about 9 000 adults between 18 years and 85 years of age.