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Human trials of Covid vaccine find it safe

Human trials of Covid vaccine find it safeThe first Covid-19 vaccine to reach phase I clinical trial is safe
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New Delhi: The first Covid-19 vaccine to reach phase I clinical trial is safe, well-tolerated, and capable of generating an immune response against the...

New Delhi: The first Covid-19 vaccine to reach phase I clinical trial is safe, well-tolerated, and capable of generating an immune response against the novel coronavirus in humans, says a new research published in The Lancet journal.

According to the study of 108 adults by Chinese researchers, the vaccine produced neutralising antibodies, and a response mediated by the immune system's T-cells against the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2.

As the coronavirus pandemic shows no sign of abating with the global cases of Covid-19, the disease caused by coronavirus surpassing 5.2 million and deaths crossing 3,38,000, the race to find a cure for it including a drug and a vaccine has also gained momentum.

Governments, drugmakers and researchers are working on around 100 vaccine programmes, but experts say that a safe and effective vaccine could take 12 to 18 months to develop.

The vaccine in China reported on Friday was made with a virus, called Ad5, modified to carry genetic instructions into a human cell. The cell begins making a coronavirus protein; the immune system learns to recognize the protein and attack it, in theory preventing the coronavirus from ever gaining a foothold. The final results of the trial will be evaluated in six months, the study said. "These results represent an important milestone. The trial demonstrates that a single dose of the new adenovirus type 5 vectored COVID-19 (Ad5-nCoV) vaccine produces virus-specific antibodies and T cells in 14 days," said study co-author Wei Chen from the Beijing Institute of Biotechnology. Based on the results, Chen said the vaccine is a potential candidate for further investigation.

The results of the trial of Chinese vaccine are based on data from a short period and it is not clear how long its effect may last. The participants in the trials also experienced many side effects depending on the potency of the dose administered.

Those with the highest dose showed the most side-effects with about 80 percent of the participants reporting at least one side effect, all expected with a viral vaccine, experts said. Almost half of the participants reported fever, fatigue and headaches, and about one in five had muscle pain.

Also, scientists, including those from the Beijing Institute of Biotechnology in China said further research is needed to confirm whether the vaccine protects against SARS-COV-2 infection.

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