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Australia's University Of Queensland Starts COVID-19 Vaccine Clinical Trials

Australia's University Of Queensland Starts COVID-19 Vaccine Clinical Trials

The University of Queensland announced on Monday it is starting the clinical trials of its novel coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine candidate.

What Happened

The Australian university's "molecular clamp" vaccine will be administered to 120 volunteers, aged between 18 and 55, as part of the first phase trials over the coming weeks, it said.

"The green light to move into this first phase of human trials follows extensive pre-clinical testing that started when we first selected our lead vaccine candidate on 14 February," the vaccine project's co-leader Paul Young said in a statement.

"This testing showed that the vaccine was effective in inducing antibodies that were able to [neutralize] the virus. Further studies have shown that the vaccine was safe to give to people."

The University of Queensland had received an initial investment of $4.5 million from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations in January.

Why It Matters

There are more than 12.9 million confirmed COVID-19 cases across the globe, including 569,128 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The pandemic continues to worsen in many countries, including the United States, Brazil, and India.

A number of other vaccine candidates, including those of Moderna Inc. (NASDAQ: MRNA), Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: INO), Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), and Oxford University, are currently seeing clinical trials.


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