Russia, which last week became the first country to grant regulatory approval to a Covid-19 vaccine amid scepticism from the global scientific community, has released a video showing how the ‘Sputnik V’ jab would end the novel coronavirus.
The 38-second promotional video, created by the Russian Direct Investment Fund, which has bankrolled the project, shows how the Sputnik V vaccine, named after the first artificial satellite, emerges and slowly eradicates the novel coronavirus from the world, with cases rising to 21.6 million, including 7,74,000 deaths. Another video showing the vaccine’s production has also been released, Sputnik News reported.
Last week, Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed the vaccine, developed by Moscow’s Gamaleya Institute along with the Defence Ministry, worked “quite effectively” and formed “stable immunity” against the disease.
Here are the latest updates of the Russian Covid-19 vaccine Sputnik V
Phase III trials to begin in 7-10 days
According to the Tass news agency, the mandatory phase-III human trials of the Sputnik V vaccine would begin in 7-10 days and several tens of thousands of people would be vaccinated. The research will be conducted in the Moscow Region.
“On August 17, we will present the first version of the protocol on post-registration research. Given this great interest and attention of the public and the press, I think that the Health Ministry won’t delay the process and will approve the protocol within a week,” Alexander Gintsburg, Director of the Gamaleya National Research Center, was quoted as saying to Tass.
The vaccine went through phase-I and phase-II testing in superfast time, the entire process being completed in less than two months, with the government skipping Phase III trials before granting approval.
West trying to ‘lure away’ our scientists: Gamaleya head
In sensational claims, Alexander Gintsburg, head of the Gamaleya National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology, said Western research institutions were seeking to “lure” away its scientists to work for them.
“Our researchers have been working at the Gamaleya Institute for ten years…Any American or European university can only dream of having such researchers. And they are seeking to lure them away. But they won’t be able to,” Gintsburg told the Rossiya-1 television channel.
The remarks come amid Western health officials questioning the efficacy and safety of the Russian vaccine as no data on the results of the human clinical trials had been published so far.
About 52% Russian doctors say they won’t get vaccinated: Survey
With Russia planning to administer the first batch of Sputnik V vaccines to health professionals, a survey has found that more than half of Russian doctors are not ready to get vaccinated. An online survey reported by the RBC news website, stated that about one in two Russian medics – 52 per cent – said that they won’t take the Sputnik V vaccine.
Out of the 52 per cent Russian medics who said they won’t administer the new vaccine, 66 per cent cited insufficient data proving its effectiveness while 48 per cent said it was developed too quickly. Only 24.5 per cent are ready to get vaccinated, the Moscow Times report said.
Recently, Russian Health Minister Mikhail Murashko said the first batch of shots would be received primarily by doctors on a voluntary basis.
First batch of Russian Covid-19 vaccine produced
The first batch of the Russian vaccine has been produced and would be rolled out by the end of this month, a Reuters report said. The timeline is earlier than its previous announcements about making the vaccine available by September and starting mass vaccination by October.
Moscow’s Gamaleya Institute said previously that Russia would be producing about 5 million doses a month by December-January. However, critics have pointed out that the Sistema facility is only capable of producing 1.5 million doses of a vaccine in a year — which is far below the quantity needed to meet the world’s demands.
Russia has already received requests for over on one billion doses of its Covid-19 vaccine from as many as 20 countries, according to the head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Kirill Dmitriev.