Two Chennai hospitals to join hands with Oxford University for COVID-19 vaccine’s human trials

South India

State health minister Dr C Vijaya Bhaskar told reporters in Chennai that CM K Palaniswami issued orders for the trials

In a major development, two hospitals in Tamil Nadu are expected to conduct human clinical trials of COVID-19 vaccine developed by Oxford University.

Accordingly, Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital and Sri Ramachandra Hospital in Chennai will conduct clinical trials of 'Covishield' in association with Oxford University on nearly 300 health volunteers aged 18 and above, said an agency report.

State health minister Dr C Vijaya Bhaskar told reporters in Chennai that Chief Minister K Palaniswami issued orders for the trials and it would commence soon.

Dr Bhaskar further said that move was part of the multi-centric clinical trial in India.

This vaccine, developed in collaboration with AstraZeneca, is tipped to be the most successful one and is undergoing phase-3 trials in some other countries.

The Phase-2 trials of the Oxford University vaccine for novel Coronavirus began in India on Wednesday, with the first doses administered to some volunteers at Punes Bharti Vidyapeeth medical college and hospital.

Punes Serum Institute of India, which has an agreement with AstraZeneca to produce and market this vaccine in India and many other countries, has initiated human trials.

Both phase-2 and phase-3 trials would take place in India.

Meanwhile, a report by NDTV said that Russia and India commenced talks over COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V and Russia. Russia also gave initial information about the vaccine to the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

Last week, Dr VK Paul, Member (Health), NITI Aayog, said that one vaccine was in the stage of phase-3 trials, the other two were also progressing well and were in the phase 1-2 of clinical trials.

"We have reviewed all these vaccine candidates. These are progressing well and their developments are taking place in a reassuring manner," said Dr Paul.

According to the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), three Indian vaccines are in different phases of clinical testing at present. Two of these vaccines - Bharat Biotech vaccine and DNA vaccine of Zydus Cadila have completed phase 1 and will begin phase 2 clinical trials, said the ICMR.

With inputs from Agency

Image credit: Oneindia



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