A vaccine developed by South Australian researchers has become one of the few to clear the first stage of human trials.
Developed by Australian biotechnology company Vaxine, and researchers from Flinders University, the vaccine, named COVAX-19, was found to be safe, and has generated an immune response with those who took part in clinical trials.
According to Professor Nikolai Petrovsky, a senior researcher from Flinders University, just getting past the first stage is an achievement in itself.
“Most vaccines never make it past animal trials, so making it past the first stage is perhaps one of the biggest hurdles to overcome in getting a vaccine approved,” says Professor Petrovsky
There are currently over seventeen potential Coronavirus vaccines in development worldwide, in countries such as Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom, and China.
The second phase of trials for COVAX-19 will involve injecting around 400 participants with the drug.
If the vaccine surpasses this stage, it is hoped that the vaccine third stage could be fast-tracked under an emergency use authorisation.
“Say if there was an outbreak of COVID-19 in a nursing home, we could potentially administer the vaccine and collect data as part of the third stage of human trials,” says Professor Petrovsky
“Normally this [phase three of human trials] could take a year, however, with this authorisation it could only take several months.”
Vaxine and Flinders Uni are currently looking for healthy volunteers to take part in the second round clinical trials starting sometime this September.