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Clinical Trial for USA Coronavirus Vaccine Begins Next Week

A clinical trial to evaluate a vaccine designed to protect against the new coronavirus begins on Mon. 23 March 2020 an unnamed USA government official announced. The trial is taking place at the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle, Washington, where COVID-19 cases have surged and authorities have banned mass gatherings. The early-stage, or phase 1 trial will test the vaccine on 45 males and non-pregnant females between the ages of 18 and 55. Meanwhile, Israeli scientists are on the cusp of developing a vaccine themselves. Israeli scientists have, for the last four years, already been developing a vaccine against infectious bronchitis virus, which affects poultry. “Our basic concept was to develop the technology and not specifically a vaccine for this kind or that kind of virus,” said Dr. Chen Katz, MIGAL’s biotechnology group leader. After scientists sequenced the DNA of the novel coronavirus causing the current worldwide outbreak, the MIGAL (The Galilee Research Institute) researchers examined it and found that the poultry coronavirus has high genetic similarity to the human one and that it uses the same infection mechanism, which increases the likelihood of achieving an effective human vaccine in a very short period of time, according to Katz. (VFI News)

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