Russia approves 2nd coronavirus vaccine, 3rd on the way

Russia // 16 October, 2020

The Moscow Times reports that Russia has approved its second coronavirus vaccine, EpiVacCorona.

This is a “peptide vaccine” – these vaccines are usually composed of 20–30 amino acids containing the specific epitope (part of) of an antigen. According to the New York Times Coronavirus Vaccine Tracker, this is the only coronavirus peptide vaccine in development.

The vaccine is being developed by Siberian biotech Vektor in Novosibirsk. Early trials on 100 volunteers were said to have been successful. Vektor is preparing for large-scale post-registration trials that will involve 40,000 persons across Russia.

Vektor is a former Soviet bio-weapons research lab and, in addition to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), is one of two sites in the world that houses smallpox stockpiles. Vektor also houses Ebola samples.

A third Russian candidate coronavirus vaccine is likely to receive government approval in December.

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