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Jan 20, 2021 / 20:31

Second made-in-Vietnam COVID-19 vaccine to begin human trials after Tet

Covivac will be the second made-in-Vietnam vaccine to be tested on humans after Nanocovax.

A second Covid-19 vaccine developed by Vietnam, Covivac, is scheduled to be tested on humans after Tet holiday, the Ministry of Health (MoH) said on January 19.

Covivac, produced by the Institute of Vaccines and Medical Biology (IVAC), yesterday received approval from the MoH for human trials.

Covivac will be the second made-in-Vietnam vaccine to be tested on humans after the Nanogen Pharmaceutical Biotechnology JSC (NANOGEN) began trials last December of its Nanocovax.

 Nanocovax, produced by the Nanogen Pharmaceutical Biotechnology JSC, was Vietnam's first coronavirus vaccine to enter human trials. Photo:

The first phase of the trials will require 120 volunteers aged 18-59 and without underlying health conditions, infectious diseases or allergies, the health ministry said.

The ministry added that the IVAC will coordinate with the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology in Hanoi and the Hanoi Medical University to begin recruiting volunteers and prepare equipment and facilities for the trials since January 21.

The volunteers will receive the first shot after Vietnam’s traditional Lunar New Year, in mid-February. The second phase is expected to begin in April and the third in July or August.

According to Dr. Chu Van Men, director of Center for Clinical Trials and Bioequivalence under the Military Medical University’s, Vietnam expects to collect all necessary data on clinical testing by the end of 2021 before it can consider mass vaccination.

Vietnam’s health ministry is in talks with the UK Covid-19 vaccine developers AstraZeneca and Oxford University to buy 30 million doses. It is also seeking to buy from the US (Pfizer), Russia (Sputnik V) and China.