The initial human volunteers have been selected to test a Russian vaccine against the deadly new coronavirus in trials set to begin in late June. The project’s chief developer is leading by example by taking his place among them.
Work on the biological preparation began in February at the Vector Institute, Russia’s leading virology and biotechnology research center. It’s based in Novosibirsk, the largest city in Siberia. Earlier in April, researchers announced that the vaccine had successfully passed trials on mice and ferrets, with preparations for human testing in full swing.
The first stage will see 60 people participating, Rinat Maksyutov, Vector Institute’s general director, told Rossiya-1. Numerous people from Novosibirsk and other Russian regions have offered their services as volunteers.
The list of test subjects has already been put together, and some members of the team now working on the vaccine, including lead developer Ilnaz Imatdinov, are among the volunteers, Maksyutov revealed. The scientists stepped forward because “they are confident in the effectiveness and safety” of the agent they are preparing, he said.