In a setback to Russia, the country has temporarily stopped the trial of COVID-19 vaccine due to a shortage of doses, according to a report.
At eight of the 25 Moscow clinics hosting the trial and inoculating volunteers, staff told the vaccination of new participants was on hold, with several saying they had used up the doses allocated to their clinics and referencing a large influx of volunteers, news agency Reuters reported.
“It’s related to the fact that there’s colossal demand for the vaccine and they are not producing enough to keep up,” said the representative of Crocus Medical, the contract research organisation helping run the trial in Moscow together with Russia’s health ministry.
According to provisional information, vaccinations will restart by around November 10, he said.
On Wednesday (October 28), the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) submitted applications to the World Health Organization (WHO) for accelerated registration and prequalification of the Sputnik V vaccine, an official statement released by the Russian embassy in New Delhi said.
Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of RDIF, said, “The Russian Federation was the first in the world to register a vaccine against the COVID-19 coronavirus, Sputnik V, which was created on a safe, effective and well-studied platform of human adenoviral vectors.”
“We have submitted an application for Emergency Use Listing and prequalification of the vaccine by the World Health Organisation, which will allow Sputnik V to be included in the list of medical products that meet leading quality, safety and efficacy standards,” Dmitriev added.
“We express our gratitude to the WHO for its active cooperation and look forward to the successful completion of the prequalification process at all major stages”.
The RDIF and Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd. (Dr. Reddy’s) have agreed to cooperate on clinical trials and distribution of Sputnik V vaccine in India.
Meanwhile, Brazil has said COVID-19 vaccine will be approved and ready to use by June 2021, the head of the country’s health regulator Anvisa, Antonio Barra Torres, told Reuters.
Torres said that Anvisa has not decided on the minimum efficacy to require but he said the agency has approved vaccines in the past with less than 50% effectiveness.
(With inputs from agencies)