Covid-19 vaccine trials to start in France in July

Medical research centre Institut Pasteur in Paris has confirmed it is to start trials on a vaccine for Covid-19 in July.

17 April 2020
Vaccination trials will commence in France in July
By Lee Mclaughlan

The race to find a vaccine for Covid-19, which has now infected almost two million people and killed more than 145,000 across the world, is intensifying in a bid to bring an end to pandemic.

A report from the World Health Organization, according to scientific news website Futura Santé, states 67 vaccines are now in the preclinical stage worldwide, while more advanced vaccines are set to begin phase one clinical trials and be tested on a small number of volunteers.

This may raise hopes of a solution, however, Dr Frédéric Tangy, director of the viral genomics and vaccination department at the institute, told BFMTV, there is no quick fix when it comes to vaccines.

He said: "No vaccine will be available for a year, or 15 to 18 months.

"The first trials are underway across the world. At the Institut Pasteur, they will take place from July. We will go as quickly as possible, but normally, to make a vaccine from scratch against a virus, it takes at least eight years."

The initial trials will determine the volunteers’ tolerance to the vaccine, but vast numbers must be tested before it can be made accessible to the wider population.

"If it is tolerated, we can gradually increase the number of volunteers vaccinated," added Dr Tangy.

"For a vaccine to be put on the market, 100,000 people per age group must have tested it without any adverse effects.

"Some vaccines may pose problems, others will work better. At the moment, we are still in the dark because our understanding of immune responses is not yet very clear. The hardest part of developing a vaccine is that we don't know the virus."

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