Russia has managed to begin clinical testing of the vaccine against the novel coronavirus faster due to its experience in developing an Ebola vaccine, the Russian Defense Ministry informed reporters on Saturday, citing Alexander Ginzburg, director of the Gamalei National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology, APA reports citing TASS.
"By using this platform [technological platform for the development of the Ebola vaccine], the Gamalei National Research Center has managed to finalize the whole spectrum of research work and pre-clinical testing in tandem with the Russian Defense Ministry, namely the 48th Central Research Institute, in a short period of time. We have achieved this due to the fact that several vaccines had been developed earlier, namely against the Ebola virus," Ginzburg said.
He thanked the Russian Defense Ministry for "very fruitful and quality work", adding that "the high level of cooperation will help reach the desired result in a restricted time frame."
Clinical testing of the vaccine developed by the Gamalei National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology began on June 18. Eighteen volunteers have been vaccinated against the novel coronavirus. Clinical testing is expected to conclude in late July.
In late December 2019, Chinese officials notified the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.
On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic.
Russia has documented 7,889 cases of COVID-19, a disease caused by the novel coronavirus, in the past 24 hours, the anti-coronavirus crisis center informed reporters on Saturday. For four days running, the daily increase in new cases does not surpass 8,000.
According to the crisis center, Russia has documented a total of 576,952 cases of the virus. The daily increase rate reaches 1.4%.