Australia's Vaxine eyes coronavirus vaccine trial in Philippines â DOST
In this file photo capped vials are being pictured during filling and packaging tests for the large-scale production and supply of the University of Oxford’s Covid-19 vaccine candidate, AZD1222, on a high-performance aseptic vial filling line on September 11, 2020 at the Italian biologics’ manufacturing facility of multinational corporation Catalent in Anagni, southeast of Rome, during the COVID-19 infection, caused by the novel coronavirus.
AFP/Vincenzo Pinto
Australia's Vaxine eyes coronavirus vaccine trial in Philippines — DOST
Gaea Katreena Cabico (Philstar.com) - October 26, 2020 - 5:56pm

MANILA, Philippines — Australian company Vaxine Pty Ltd has expressed interest in conducting a clinical trial of its coronavirus vaccine candidate in the country, the Department of Science and Technology said Monday.

DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña said the biotechnology firm based in Australia has informed the department that it is willing to conduct clinical trial and manufacturing of its potential vaccines against COVID-19 in the Philippines.

“It is quite recent in terms of expressing interest,” de la Peña said in a forum organized by the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines. He did not provide other details.

According to the coronavirus vaccine tracker of the New York Times, Vaxine’s candidate vaccine combines “viral proteins with an adjuvant that stimulates the immune system.”

The Phase 2 trial for the candidate vaccine is expected to begin by the end of the year. Phase 2 studies involve up to several hundred individuals and aim to define the optimal dose and safety profile of vaccine candidates.

Earlier, the vaccine candidate of Chinese drug maker Sinovac Biotech hurdled the initial stage of screening for clinical trials in the country after passing the review of the vaccine experts panel chaired by the DOST. It is still undergoing the evaluation of the Single Joint Ethics Research Board.

The World Health Organization-led solidarity trial for COVID-19 vaccines will start in September in the Philippines. It was initially scheduled to begin by end-October.

The country is in talks with 17 companies as it seeks to source a vaccine that will help end one of the worst outbreaks in Southeast Asia.

The Philippines' COVID-19 caseload reached 371,630 Monday, with 7,039 deaths. 

COVID-19 VACCINES NOVEL CORONAVIRUS
As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: November 26, 2020 - 11:53am

Pharma giants Sanofi and GSK said on July 29, 2020, that they have agreed to supply Britain with up to 60 million doses of a potential COVID-19 vaccine. The agreement covers a vaccine candidate developed by France's Sanofi in partnership with the UK's GSK and is subject to a "final contract."

This thread collects some of the major developments in the search for a vaccine to ease the new coronavirus pandemic. (Main photo by AFP/Joel Saget)

November 26, 2020 - 11:53am

Cash-strapped Latin American governments face severe geographical, economic and social challenges in trying to ensure life-saving COVID-19 vaccines are made available to vulnerable populations, experts say. 

Megacities like Sao Paulo, mountain ranges like the Andes as well as the vast Amazon basin pose just a few of the geographical problems for distributors, given the vital need to maintain the cold chain to preserve the vaccines.

Transporting vaccines "to the most distant parts of the big cities and to peripheral neighborhoods, with the need to conserve the cold chain, will be the first major challenge," Colombian epidemiologist Carlos Trillos told AFP.

Governments also face a race against time to provide training to those handling the doses throughout the cold chain, he said. — AFP

November 25, 2020 - 10:47am

The United States plans to distribute 6.4 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in the first week after it is cleared for emergency use, which is likely next month, officials say Tuesday.

A committee of the Food and Drug Administration meets on December 10 to decide whether to green light the medicine, with the US confronted by soaring numbers of deaths and new cases.

Latest figures on Tuesday showed that the country had recorded a total of 259,600 COVID deaths and 12.5 million cases — with over 2,000 deaths and 167,000 new cases in just the last 24 hours.

General Gustave Perna, chief operations officer for the government's Operation Warp Speed, told reporters some 40 million doses of vaccine would be available by the end of December.

That figure includes another vaccine developed by Moderna and the National Institutes for Health, which announced some preliminary efficacy results last week and is also close to applying for emergency approval. — AFP

November 25, 2020 - 10:33am

The United States plans to distribute 6.4 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in the first week after it is cleared for emergency use, which is likely next month, officials say.

A committee of the Food and Drug Administration meets on December 10 to decide whether to green light the medicine, with the US confronted by soaring numbers of deaths and new cases. — AFP 

November 24, 2020 - 6:48pm

Russia's Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine is 95% effective according to a second interim analysis of clinical trial data, its developers said on Tuesday.

The calculations were based on preliminary data obtained 42 days after the first dose, Russia's health ministry, the state-run Gamaleya research centre and the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) said in a statement. 

They did not note the number of cases used to make the calculation, however. — AFP

November 23, 2020 - 5:20pm

European stock markets opened firmer Monday, buoyed as positive news on another coronavirus vaccine trial helped offset concerns over soaring case numbers, dealers said.

In London, the FTSE 100 index of leading shares was up 0.5 percent at 6,382.36 points.

In the Eurozone, the Paris CAC 40 gained nearly one percent to 5,543.83 points and the Frankfurt DAX put on 0.6 percent to 13,219.25 points.

Shortly before the markets opened, British drugs group AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford said their jointly-developed vaccine against COVID-19 has shown "an average efficacy of 70 percent" in trials, and up to 90 percent in one dosage combination. — AFP

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