Airlines, airports get ready for Operation COVID Vaccine

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Sinovac is already pushing ahead with late-stage trials, although one phase 3 trial of its vaccine was stopped in Brazil this month after reports of a serious safety concern, with one report stating a death is involved but that it was not in the vaccine arm. "The Lancet Infectious Diseases" journal published the results of the initial trial.

This, the biotech said, is based on its experience with other vaccines and data from preclinical studies with macaques.

The GMR Group, which operates Delhi and Hyderabad airports, says the air cargo units of both these places are getting ready to "play a pivotal role in the distribution of vaccines through state of the art time and temperature-sensitive distribution system" with cool chambers ranging from +25°C to -20°C.

Earlier this week, two American drug-makers announced that their separate COVID-19 vaccine candidates were 95 percent effective against the disease.

"We believe that this makes the vaccine suitable for emergency use during the pandemic", Prof Zhu said in a statement published alongside the paper.

Sinovac is now running three Phase III trials in Indonesia, Brazil and Turkey.

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Researchers said the findings from large, late-stage studies, or phase three trials, would be crucial to determine if the immune response generated by CoronaVac was sufficient to protect people from the coronavirus infection. "But even then, after phase three trial completion and after licensure, we should prudently remain cautious", he said.

As companies around the world race to develop coronavirus vaccines, hundreds of thousands of people in China were inoculated with a vaccine before its efficacy was proven in trials. "It would just be logistically very hard to transport [an mRNA] vaccine at the cold and ultra-cold temperatures that are required", he adds.

The Oxford vaccine uses a harmless, weakened adenovirus to carry genetic material from the new coronavirus into the body.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration's outside advisers will meet on December 10 to discuss whether to authorize the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer Inc PFE.N and German partner BioNTech 22UAy.DE for emergency use, the agency said on Friday.

Pfizer's vaccine must be stored and transported at minus 70 deg C, though it can be kept in a normal fridge for up to five days, or up to 15 days in a thermal shipping box. Now we've got to get the data about the vaccines in front of regulators for them to scrutinize it and approve the first vaccines.

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