UAE’s Covid-19 Vaccine Trials

Till date, there’s no recommended medicines or vaccines for Covid-19 treatments. Scientists and Researchers around the globe are testing various possible treatments and medications. UAE has participated in trials for an inactivated vaccine developed by Chinese company, Sinopharm’s China National Biotec Group (CNBG). The trial is managed and supervised by the Abu Dhabi Government and G42 Healthcare, Abu Dhabi-based artificial intelligence company in UAE commenced in Abu Dhabi on July 16. 

Volunteers across UAE were invited to join this clinical 49-days trial via #4Humanity campaign. 15,000 volunteers aged between 18 – 60 years including 4,500 Emiratis, from 102 nationalities have participated in it. The trial is being conducted following the strict guidelines of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United States Food & Drug Administration (USFDA). The volunteers are under supervision for an adverse effects check and regular health monitored with 2 vaccinations for each individual volunteer. 

By the end of August, out of 142 vaccine candidates in preclinical evaluation in the whole world, only 31 are in clinical trials. Among 31 vaccines, 19 are in Phase I, 5 are in Phase II (trial made in more than 100 individuals) and 7 are in Phase III (trial made in more than 1000 individuals). 1 of the 7 Phase III trials, also the world’s first  inactivated vaccine to enter a Phase III trial, is being tested in UAE If the trial results get a positive impact, then the vaccine will be manufactured after being approved.

Dr Nawal Ahmed Alkaabi, UAE Principal Investigator, Shaikh Khalifa Medical City CMO and Chairperson of the National Covid-19 Clinical Management Committee addressed “The UAE has a track record of successfully managing clinical trial programmes in the country and that has helped to influence the decision to play host to the world’s first Phase III clinical trials of an inactivated vaccine.”.

Jingjin Zhu, President of Sinopharm Group Biological Products, said “The speed of these trials to date and the incredible diversity of volunteers who have been vaccinated has fully reinforced our decision that the UAE was a perfect location to test our inactivated vaccine and reach the widest demographic range of volunteers.” 

Volunteers participating in trial cannot travel abroad within the trial period and are requested to be in regular phone consultation for up to six months. Though they are free to opt out at any time. They are recognised with 1000 AED worth of vouchers and other giveaways throughout the program. 

The same Phase III trial is also going to be conducted in Bahrain which is also managed by G42 Healthcare with the Bahrain Ministry of Health. G42 Healthcare has used their supercomputer, AI and advanced diagnosis solutions for Covid-19 for running all clinical operations for this trial.

UAE has taken a great initiation to contribute for research on prevention and treatment of Covid-19. The world is admiring UAE leadership in Covid-19 clinical trial and for collaborating to overcome this coronavirus pandemic. Everybody is praying for the successful Covid-19 vaccine and waiting for the days getting back to normal. 

Image: G42

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