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KEM Hospital to begin Phase 2 and Phase 3 trials of Covishield vaccine

To be eligible for the Coronavirus vaccine shot, the volunteer will need to have tested negative for COVID-19 by antigen testing

KEM Hospital to begin Phase 2 and Phase 3 trials of Covishield vaccine
SHARES

The King Edward Memorial (KEM) Hospital in Mumbai has started Phase II and Phase III trials of the Covishield vaccine on Wednesday as per officials from the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC). The Covishield vaccine is being developed by the Serum Institute of India (SII) based on research from the University of Oxford’s (Jenner Institute) vaccine candidate.

KEM Hospital reportedly received the requisite permissions from the Maharashtra Ethics Committee on Tuesday to start the trials. The Dean at KEM, Dr. Hemant Deshmukh has mentioned that screening for volunteers has already begun.

It’s worth noting that the B.Y.L. Nair Charitable Hospital has also received permissions from the authorities to run vaccine trials. KEM and BYL hospitals are both run by the BMC. As per sources, the two institutions combined will conduct trials on more than 200 volunteers.

Read - Russia To Supply 100 Million Doses Of Coronavirus Vaccine To India

To be eligible for the vaccine shot, the volunteer will need to have tested negative for COVID-19 by antigen testing and the more commonly used RT-PCR testing method. Only those who test negative in both tests will be provided with a vaccine, it is said. To put it in layman’s terms, the authorities have to find people who have never been infected by the coronavirus to understand the vaccine’s efficiency. 

While the RT-PCR test can help the authorities ascertain if the infection is still present in the body, an antigen test shows the number of antibodies generated after healing from the virus. The latter is usually an indicator that a person has caught the virus previously despite showing little to no symptoms.

The University of Oxford vaccine is being developed in partnership with pharma giant AstraZeneca. Although the vaccine development was halted a few weeks ago due to some alleged irregularities, it has now officially resumed. 

Also read - Around 500 People Have Volunteered For COVID-19 Vaccine Trials In Mumbai

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