Coronavirus: UK researchers to immunize hundreds with vaccine candidate

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The team hopes to have enough data soon to begin inoculating several thousands in October.

Small bottles labeled with a "Vaccine COVID-19" sticker and a medical syringe are seen in this illustration (photo credit: REUTERS/ DADO RUVIC)

Small bottles labeled with a “Vaccine COVID-19” sticker and a medical syringe are seen in this illustration

(photo credit: REUTERS/ DADO RUVIC)

UK scientists from the Imperial College London are planning to immunize hundreds of people with an experimental coronavirus vaccine, the Associated Press (AP) reported.

This is part of an early trial, after earlier tests in a small number of people already vaccinated showed no worrying safety problems. This  low dose test in initial participants was a very slow process, and the scientists will now expand their trial to around 300 people, some of whom are over the age of 75, the college’s Dr. Robin Shattock told AP.

Shattock, who is leading the college’s vaccine research efforts, told AP that he hopes he will have enough safety data soon to be able to begin inoculating thousands of people in October.

However, it is unclear where the vaccine will be tested, due to the dramatic drop in new coronavirus cases in the UK. This drop in cases makes observing the vaccine‘s effectiveness difficult, forcing Shattock to look elsewhere, he told AP, explaining: “We’re looking very carefully at the pandemic, at the numbers where the hot spots are and talking to collaborators that have the facilities to do these kinds of studies.”

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the usual success rate for vaccines is approximately 10%. The WHO added that multiple vaccine approaches are necessary for COVID-19. Numerous vaccine candidates are in development around the world, with several of them, such as the ones made by China and Oxford University in the UK, beginning final-stage tests in hard hit countries, such as Brazil.

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