• Joint forces

    Joint forces

    Kenya could soon become the second African nation to take part in Oxford University’s international COVID-19 vaccine trials.

    Pending authorisation from the East African country’s National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation, Kenya will join South Africa, Brazil, the UK and other nations in Phase 3 of the Oxford study.

    If approved, the Kenyan vaccine trial will be conducted in two stages, using participants from the healthcare sector. Stage 1 will comprise a group of 40 people, and the second stage will involve an additional 360 recruits.

    According to a statement by the Kenya Medical Research Institute, which will be leading the trial in the country, a vaccine that works in one population may not necessarily work in all populations. ‘Therefore, it is important to find out whether the trial vaccine works among Kenyan populations to ensure that Kenyans can benefit from the vaccine, if it proves to be successful,’ it states, as reported by AllAfrica.

    The Oxford University vaccine being trialled includes genetic material from COVID-19, and ChAdOx1, a weakened version of the adenovirus – which causes cold-like symptoms in chimpanzees – that has been modified to not result in illness in humans. Participants in the trial will be monitored over a 12-month period.

    29 September 2020
    Image: Gallo/Reuters Images