Coronavirus: Abu Dhabi launches trials for Russian Sputnik V vaccine

At least 500 volunteers are required for the test

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Latest: What we know about Russia's Covid-19 vaccine Sputnik V

Abu Dhabi has launched Phase 3 trials for Russia's Covid-19 vaccine.

Volunteers will receive two doses of the Sputnik V vaccine, administered 20 days apart, and will be monitored throughout.

Eligible volunteers must be resident in Abu Dhabi; at least 18 years old; not have been infected with Covid-19; or suffered any communicable or respiratory diseases in the past 14 days.

At least 500 volunteers will initially participate in the campaign  – vaccine for victory –  and they can register at http://v4v.ae.

Russia aims to make a billion doses of the Sputnik V vaccine next year and sell it for less than $20 per person in the international market.

The vaccine was developed by the Gamaleya National Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology.

It was registered by the Russian Ministry of Health on August 11, 2020 and became the first registered Covid-19 vaccine out of 165 vaccines being developed around the globe.

Sputnik V is based on two human adenoviruses – common viruses that cause fever and cold and flu-like symptoms – that were rendered harmless and genetically engineered to carry coronavirus genes.

That contrasts with other vaccines that use adenoviruses from chimpanzees.

Russia says the vaccine is safe and about about 95 per cent effective, although some scientists in the West have questioned the speed of its development.

The UAE was also chosen as a partner for Chinese company Sinopharm's Phase 3 trial in July. More than 30,000 volunteers were part of the process.

An early version of the Sinopharm vaccine was approved by Emirati authorities for use by frontline workers and others.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, and several UAE ministers and officials have taken the Sinopharm vaccine.

News of the vaccines bring hope to the world after a year ravaged by Covid-19.

Russia has already starting vaccinating those most at risk.

UK health authorities approved a vaccine made by Pfizer and aim to start inoculating people on Tuesday.

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