- The Washington Times - Monday, July 13, 2020

Russia has become the first nation to successfully complete human trials of a COVID-19 vaccine, according to media reports.

Elena Smolyarchuk, chief researcher for the Center for Clinical Research on Medications at Sechenov University, told the Russian news agency TASS on Sunday that the trials were completed and that the volunteers would be discharged soon.

“The research has been completed, and it proved that the vaccine is safe. The volunteers will be discharged on July 15 and July 20,” Ms. Smolyarchuk said. The volunteers will remain under medical supervision on an out-patient basis after their discharge.

There was no other information on commercial production of this vaccine, Forbes reported.

Russia clinically tested two forms of a potential COVID-19 vaccine developed by the Gamaleya National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology, media reports say. The first vaccine, which was a solution to be injected into the muscle, was completed at the Burdenko Military Hospital. The second trial vaccine, which was a powder for solution for intramuscular injection, was carried out at Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University.

The first stage of the vaccine clinical trials at Sechenov University began on June 18 when 18 volunteers were vaccinated. The second phase included a group of 20 volunteers who were vaccinated on June 23.

All trial volunteers had to be isolated in a hospital for 28 days after vaccination.

Russia has reported more than 732,000 coronavirus illnesses and more than 11,000 deaths as of Monday, a tally by Johns Hopkins University shows.

There are currently 23 vaccine candidates undergoing clinical trials, according to the World Health Organization.

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