EghtesadOnline: Government Spokesman Ali Rabiei announced on Tuesday that Iran will start its mass inoculation program over the next two weeks.
“We have finalized the vaccine purchase agreement and immunization of high-risk groups will begin during the 10-Day Dawn,” Rabiei was quoted as saying by ISNA.
Ten-Day Dawn celebrations, spanning from Jan. 31 to Feb. 10, marks the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution’s victory.
In addition to vaccine imports, several local pharmaceutical companies are also developing a coronavirus vaccine and one has already begun human trials.
Payam Tabarsi, a member of the team behind the vaccine dubbed Cov Iran Barkat, said all 56 volunteers will receive the injection by Feb. 28.
Cov Iran Barkat has so far been administered to 21 volunteers. A total of 56 participants will receive the shot during the first phase of human trial.
“The second phase will begin after the New Year with 500 volunteers,” Tabarsi said, adding that the results of the second phase will come to light by May 21.
Mass production of the domestically-manufactured vaccine is expected to start by late spring.
Razi Starts Vaccine’s Human Trials
Human testing for Iran’s second experimental vaccine developed by Razi Vaccine and Serum Research Institute will begin in the near future.
Ali Es’haqi, the head of the institute, said Razi Cov Pars will be administered to the 18-55 age group in a double blind study.
While Barkat is made from a dead or weakened coronavirus, Razi has produced a protein-based vaccine that trains the body’s immune system to recognize the protein spike on the surface of SARS-Cov-2.
Razi Cov Pars has obtained regulatory approval for the first and second phases of human trials.
Iran recorded an additional 6,420 coronavirus patients on Tuesday, 590 of whom were admitted to hospitals across the country, the spokeswoman for the Health Ministry, Sima Sadat Lari, said.
“The total number of Covid-19 infections rose to 1.385 million,” the health official added.
According to Lari, the viral infection claimed the lives of 79 within the past 24 hours, taking the national death toll to 57,560.
More than 1.17 million have recovered from the respiratory illness and 4,000 are in critical condition, she said.
Lari noted that Iran has carried out over 9.01 million PCR tests since the start of the outbreak.
Worldwide, Covid-19 cases crossed the 100 million milestone on Tuesday and fatalities reached 2.15 million.