Shomporko Desk:-TORONTO – In a couple of weeks, a potential COVID-19 vaccine developed in Quebec will turn into the main Canadian-made vaccine candidate to enter human trials.
Nathalie Landry, executive vice president of Scientific and Medical Affairs with Medicago, the biopharmaceutical company in the back of the vaccine, disclosed that they “have completed preclinical development for this vaccine,” and are only “a few weeks away from initiating our first clinical trials in humans.”
Research teams with Laval University worked with the company to develop the vaccine candidate. Both the federal government and the Quebec government have contributed funds towards the vaccine’s development.
Landry describes the vaccine as “a virus-like particle, produced in our unique manufacturing technology that uses plants.” It was developed after receiving the SARS-Cov-2 gene, which is the technical name for the virus that causes COVID-19.
In earlier animal testing of the vaccine, which is produced in tobacco plants, mice began producing a positive antibody response within 10 days of receiving a single dose, researchers said in May.
Landry said the company has submitted the vaccine for approval to begin human trials, and that is currently being reviewed by Health Canada.
“If we get approval in time, we will be enrolling subjects and beginning this study by mid-July,” she said.
The first phase is “designed to evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of the vaccine,” she explained. It will enrol adults aged 18 to 55 and will be conducted at a clinical site in Montreal.
“If everything goes as planned, this phase one would provide results by the end of August, and by September, we’ll be selecting the best vaccine treatment option,” Landry said.
Phase two of the trials would launch in October.
Photo credit: Ted S. Warren/The Associated Press
News source: CTV News