The Gamalei Сenter started working on a coronavirus vaccine in February, and its creation took two weeks.
Denis Logunov, Deputy Director for research at the center, told in an interview. It was developed so quickly thanks to the work on a similar vaccine for the MERS‐CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus) — work on it was conducted for three years.
“We made a vaccine against MERS and tried different options. This was a lot of work, and we have reached the second phase of clinical research. Therefore, when another coronavirus appeared, the closest relative of the beta-coronavirus group, we had no doubt what to do and how to do it. There were no creative torments. Copyist in the literal sense,” – said Mr. Logunov.
He added that the awareness of the severity of the problem came after the world health organization conference in February, when the center was involved in the work. Denis Logunov noted that there was no doubt about the choice of the development path. “We were not afraid, we went through this story many times. I repeat, we have already made a two-vector MERS vaccine and administered it to volunteers,” Mr. Logunov added.
Recall that the first phase of clinical trials was held on July 20. The defense Ministry and Sechenov University, which vaccinated the volunteers, reported that they developed immunity. Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin expressed hope that the first vaccine will appear in the autumn.