Sinopharm Chairman Liu Jingzhen Attends State Council Press Conference to Introduce the Latest Coronavirus Vaccine Progress
The Joint Prevention and Control Mechanism of the State Council held a press conference at 3 p.m. on October 20. Liu Jingzhen, chairman of China National Pharmaceutical Group Co., Ltd. (Sinopharm), attended the press conference to introduce the latest progress in the development of COVID-19 vaccine.
Liu stated that two inactivated vaccines for COVID-19 developed by Beijing Institute of Biological Products Co., Ltd. and Wuhan Institute of Biological Products Co., Ltd. under China National Biotec Group (CNBG) affiliated to Sinopharm have been under phase-III clinical trials in 10 countries including the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain, Egypt, Morocco, Peru and Argentina. So far, 50,000 people have been inoculated with the vaccines, and the total number will surpass 60,000. The clinical trials are now well underway, with the inoculated sample population covering 125 countries. Currently, the results of the trials lead the world in all aspects, winning wide recognition around the globe. To date, dozens of countries have expressed willingness to purchase coronavirus vaccines from CNBG.
On February 1, a key emergency project under the “Public Security Risk Prevention and Control and Emergency Response Technology and Equipment” national program of the Ministry of Science and Technology to develop inactivated coronavirus vaccines was launched, with CNBG as the leading participant. On April 12, the inactivated coronavirus vaccine developed by the Wuhan institute was approved for domestic phase-I and II clinical trials at the same time. On April 27, the inactivated coronavirus vaccine developed by the
Beijing institute was also approved for clinical trials, ensuring a belt-and-braces approach for the development of coronavirus vaccines. A total 4,064 people at various ages were inoculated as part of the domestic phase-I and II clinical trials. Results of double-blind placebo experiments showed that both vaccines are highly safe and those who received vaccination all show high-titer immunological response, regardless of age, vaccination procedure and dosage. Their neutralizing antibody positive conversion rate reached 100% after
the immunization procedure with an interval of 28 days.
At present, the research of inactivated vaccines for COVID-19 has entered the stage of last sprint. CNBG has reached the last mile along its “Long March” of coronavirus vaccine development. Once the safety and protectiveness of the vaccines are proven in the phase-III clinical trials, they will be mass produced after obtaining relevant approval. In fact, the vaccines have been used in emergency situations. The two vaccines developed by CNBG have been approved for urgent vaccination. Now, CNBG has got ready for mass production. Its Beijing and Wuhan institutes have completed construction of workshops meeting high-level biological safety standards, and their capacity is estimated to reach 1 billion doses next year, so as to ensure enough supply of safe vaccines.
To respond to journalists’ questions about the possible adverse reactions of the coronavirus vaccines, Liu noted that based on the results of the 4,046 inoculated people participating in the domestic phase-I and II clinical trials and more than 50,000 participating in the phase-III trials worldwide, CNBG hasn’t found any case with severe adverse reactions, indicating that the vaccines are highly safe. Of course, close attention is still given to relevant reports in this regard.