Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research Khaled Abdel Ghaffar is expected to announce next Wednesday the start of clinical trials on the first Egyptian COVID-19 vaccine produced by the National Research Centre (NRC).
In a statement, a copy of which was obtained by Asharq Al-Awsat, the NRC said that Ghaffar would make the announcement in a press conference attended by head of the Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA), which is the body entitled to give permissions on clinical trials after studying the special file of every vaccine.
The clinical trials would be conducted on a group of volunteers at the hospital of the National Research Center.
This important development is considered the first in the country’s scientific research history.
It was preceded by lab and animal testing, which produced very promising results, allowing the EDA to give permission for manufacturing the first doses of the Covi Vax vaccine.
In previous statements, Mohamed Ahmed Ali, head of the center's virology laboratory, said that the clinical trials respected scientific rules and were conducted on 10,000 to 15,000 volunteers.
The Egyptian vaccine contains 4 proteins for MERS-CoV, which leads to high-dose antibodies against the virus.
After passing clinical trials, the vaccine will be the first to be manufactured in the country through solely Egyptian efforts.
The Health Ministry said that 331 new coronavirus cases were detected in Egypt over the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of infections to 289,684.
In a statement, spokesman for the Health Ministry Khaled Megahed said 10 patients have died from the virus over the past 24 hours, raising the death toll to 16,776.
As many as 439 patients were discharged from hospitals after receiving necessary medical care, taking the number of recoveries to 241,415, he added.