The world’s first phase-III clinical trial of a COVID-19 inactivated vaccine formally began in the UAE on Thursday as cooperation flourishes between Sinopharm, the leading vaccine producer in China, and G42 Healthcare, based in Dubai. The first group of up to 15,000 registered volunteers – including UAE nationals and expatriates – received the vaccine at a medical center Sheikh Khalifa Medical City in Abu Dhabi on Thursday.
Sheikh Abdulla bin Mohammed Al Hamed, Chairman of the Department of Health of the UAE, was one of the first to participate in the vaccination trial, according to a statement released by G42. The trial showcases the UAE health authorities’ confidence in Chinese-developed vaccines and its commitment to work with China to overcome the pandemic through collaborative efforts, experts said.More than 1,000 Sinopharm employees, including the head of the company, have been voluntarily vaccinated, as its phase-I and phase-II clinical trials showed promising results with few adverse reactions compared to other vaccines currently undergoing trials.
Australian Researchers Invent 20-Minute Coronavirus Blood Test
Researchers in Australia have devised a test that can determine novel coronavirus infection in about 20 minutes using blood samples in what they say is a world-first breakthrough. The researchers at Monash University said their test can determine if someone is currently infected and if they have been infected in the past.“Short-term applications include rapid case identification and contact tracing to limit the viral spread, while population screening to determine the extent of viral infection across communities is a longer-term need,” the researchers said in a paper published in the journal ACS Sensors on Friday.
The research team was led by BioPRIA and Monash University’s Chemical Engineering Department, including researchers from the ARC Centre of Excellence in Convergent BioNano Science and Technology (CBNS). Their test, using 25 microlitres of plasma from blood samples, looks for agglutination, or clustering of red blood cells, that the coronavirus cause