Putin’s Coronavirus Vaccine Approved After Tests On Only 38 People
Experts have expressed concerns over Vladimir Putin’s ‘world’s first’ coronavirus vaccine, which has been approved after tests on just 38 people.
On August 11, Putin announced that the country’s health regulator had become the world’s first to approve a vaccine for widespread use.
However, reports from Russia claim there are currently ‘no clinical studies’ to prove how effective it will be, with the medication having been registered after just 42 days of research.
As per the MailOnline, the Fontanka news agency has reported that the effectiveness of the drug is as of yet ‘unknown’.
It has also been alleged that the vaccine has caused side-effects amongst volunteers, such as hyperthermia, pain, itching and swelling.
The vaccine, named ‘Sputnik V’ after the former Soviet space satellites, has sparked widespread fears within the scientific community that Putin is putting prestige before public safety, with the drug potentially making the pandemic even worse should it prove to be dangerous or ineffective.
Virologist at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, Florian Krammer, tweeted:
Not sure what Russia is up to, but I certainly would not take a vaccine that hasn’t been tested in Phase III.
Nobody knows if it’s safe or if it works. They are putting [health-care workers] and their population at risk.
It has been reported that, out of the 38 healthy adult human volunteers who have been tested, there have been 144 different adverse events.
Most reportedly passed ‘without consequences’. However, on the 42nd day of the study, 31 of the side-effects were found to be ongoing. The outcome of 27 adverse events are reported to be still unknown to the developer.
In a statement distributed by the UK Science Media Centre, Francois Balloux, a geneticist at University College London, said:
This is a reckless and foolish decision. Mass vaccination with an improperly tested vaccine is unethical.
Any problem with the Russian vaccination campaign would be disastrous both through its negative effects on health, but also because it would further set back the acceptance of vaccines in the population.
As reported by The Moscow Times, Russia confirmed 5,102 new coronavirus infections Wednesday, bringing the country’s official number of cases to 902,701.
According the vaccine’s registration certificate on the Health Ministry website, the vaccine will enter civilian circulation on January 1, 2021.
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CreditsThe Moscow Times and 2 others
The Moscow Times