China’s armed forces on Monday approved a vaccine against the new coronavirus, only for internal use, developed by its research unit, in conjunction with a biotechnology company, advances The Guardian.
More than half of the 17 vaccine candidates identified by the World Health Organization (WHO), which are undergoing clinical evaluation, involve Chinese companies or health institutes.
Hong Kong-based CanSino Biologics said in a statement to the stock exchange that clinical trial data showed that the Chinese military vaccine had a “good safety profile” with strong potential to prevent diseases caused by the new coronavirus .
The company also revealed that China’s central military commission approved the use of the vaccine on 25 June for a period of one year.
The vaccine was developed by CanSino, in conjunction with the Beijing Institute of Biotechnology, part of the Academy of Military Medical Sciences. Its use cannot be extended without new approvals, according to the company.
The extent of its use in China’s military forces remains unknown, and the Ministry of Defense has not responded to a request for comment from the France Press Agency (AFP) for more information.
CanSino added that it cannot guarantee that the vaccine, whose phase 1 trials have already been carried out, will be marketed. Another 131 candidate vaccines identified by WHO are currently in the pre-clinical phase.
According to the medical magazine ‘The Lancet’, more than a thousand clinical trials have been carried out on dozens of pharmaceutical treatments against the virus, but so far, no fully effective medical intervention has been found.