Pakistan has commenced Phase III clinical trials for CanSino Biologics’ Coronavirus vaccine candidate, a Government Minister, and an official at the Chinese pharmaceutical company informed on Tuesday.
Pakistan granted the permission for the country’s first Phase-III clinical trial in August for CanSino’s candidate, Ad5-nCoV, led by the government-run National Institute of Health (NIH) and pharmaceutical company AJM – the local representative of CanSino.
“Just launched the Phase III trials for a Coronavirus vaccine in Pakistan,” told the Minister for Planning, Asad Umar, who also watch over command and control operations headed by the country’s military to battle the Covid-19 eruption.
He informed that a total of 40,000 people across seven countries will take part in the trial, including up to 10,000 in Pakistan. Preliminary results are expected in four to six months, the Minister apprised in a tweet.
The trial started at a hospital in Islamabad, where 20-25 subjects were expected to be enrolled daily, and will expand to several other cities in the upcoming days, Hassan Abbas Zaheer, heading the trial for AJM, informed. “Our team is there and they have asked us a lot of people have turned up to take part, and it is very encouraging,” Hassan added.
Every passing day, positive cases of the Covid-19 in Pakistan peaked at more than 6,000 in June but have since gone done sharply, with only 582 new cases confirmed on Tuesday – taking the total to 306,886 with 6,424 deaths. The South Asian nation of 220 million has been conducting between 20,000 and 36,000 tests every day.
The World Health Organization has acknowledged Pakistan’s efforts to battle the Covid-19, although analysts say the exact reasons for the steep drop in infections are yet to be determined in a country where the public pays scant regard to precautions.