Russia's COVID-19 vaccine: Muscovites urged to take part in trial

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Scientists at the World Health Organization said last week that although they had begun discussions with Russian Federation about its vaccine, they had not yet received any detailed data about it.

Despite the tensions, Champagne said "we have issues in terms of global health where we can work together".

A source in the Bangladesh Medical Research Council, the country's apex body for medical research, said the organisation had cleared the Chinese proposal for a trial as it was convinced about the safety and efficacy of the candidate vaccine. Dhaka, after deliberating for more than a month, allowed Sinovac's trials to proceed in the country on Thursday (Aug 27). "Even a less protective vaccine will still offer some level of immunity".

Despite the fact that the Russian Ministry of Health stressed that Sputnik V had undergone all the necessary checks and had been proven to be capable of building immunity against the virus, Western countries and mainstream media rushed to claim that the vaccine was unsafe and ineffective. "When we do, India will follow its Neighbourhood First policy", he said.

China detained two Canadians and halted billions of dollars of agricultural imports in the weeks that followed, souring the Trudeau government's ties with the nation's second-largest trading partner.

A logo of China's vaccine specialist CanSino Biologics Inc is pictured on the company's headquarters in Tianjin, following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), China August 17, 2020.

"A nod for one company doesn't mean that they have shut the door on other candidate vaccines...." In comparison, Chinese firms do not have a similarly well established position to supply vaccines around the world, he added.

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The drug developer is one of the leading USA contenders in the race to develop a safe and effective jab against COVID-19 and its candidate, mRNA-1273, is already in the Phase III stage of human testing. So, India should finally get an approved Covid-19 vaccine by the first quarter of 2021, say analysts.

This week, SII began phase two trials for AstraZeneca's Covishield vaccine in India.

The phase 3 trials are expected to be complete by September-end with the vaccine potentially hitting the market by the end of this year.

The U.K. has signed multiple deals with pharmaceuticals for COVID-19 vaccines.

Others, however, felt that an approval to the human trial of a candidate vaccine to fight a pandemic could not be seen as a diplomatic failure.

"Judging from similar things in the past, the government is more likely to provide vaccines and drugs under its aid programme on a grant basis", said Dr Balakrishnan, a retired Indian ambassador.

Recipient countries, meanwhile, are hedging their bets to ensure they are among the first to get access to any successful vaccine.

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