Turkey begins phase 2 trials of local COVID-19 vaccine

KAYSERI from Turkey

A Turkish university administered the first dose of ERUCOV-VAC to a human volunteer on Wednesday as part of phase 2 trials of the locally developed coronavirus vaccine candidate.

A statement from Erciyes University in central Kayseri province said the first dose of the inactive vaccine candidate was administered on November 5, 2020 in phase 1.

The ERUCOV-VAC vaccine is being developed at the University of Erciyes with the support of the Turkish Institutes of Health Administration (TUSEB).

University director Mustafa Calis said their trials and efforts to develop the vaccine in phase 2 are continuing.

“We hope that the Phase 2 trials will be as successful as the Phase 1 trials,” Calis said in the statement.

As part of the phase 2 trials, the candidate vaccine will be administered to at least 250 human volunteers, the statement added.

On January 14, Turkey launched a mass vaccination campaign against COVID-19 starting with health workers.

Since last December, Turkey has imposed curfews on weeknights and weekends to curb the spread of the virus.

Since its emergence in December 2019, the virus has killed more than 2.35 million people in 192 countries and regions.

More than 107.2 million cases have been reported worldwide, with recoveries totaling nearly 60 million, according to figures compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

The United States, India and Brazil remain the most affected countries in terms of infections.

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