THAILAND: Thailand’s second domestically produced vaccine that is associated with the Chulalongkorn University is soon to undergo human trials. The mRNA vaccine ChulaCovid-19 has successfully passed its trials with macaques and rats in the Chula vaccine research center. The human trials are scheduled in late April or in early May, mentioned Kiat Ruxrungthan, in charge of the University’s vaccine development project.
The delineated announcement was followed after there was heavy criticism of Thailand’s slow vaccine strategy.
ChulaCovid-19, the Thai-developed vaccine which was initially being produced in California, will now be produced locally in Bionet Asia, Bangkok.
The Chulalongkorn University is also working on the updated version of the vaccine that will fight against the British and European variations of the virus.
“Thailand isn’t just relying on one source for vaccines. We’re actively looking for ways to procure the shots, including producing them ourselves,” Anutin Charnvirakul, Health Minister of Thailand said.
He also mentioned that following expectantly successful human trials, 5 million vaccines are to be produced by year-end. Affixing that the number will later rise to 20 million doses of vaccines annually.
“We’re not placing our bets on one horse, what we’re doing now is owning a whole stable,” Anutin said.
Furthermore, Thailand has ordered 61 million doses from AstraZeneca, the production will be done in Siam Bioscience, a local manufacturer owned by the country’s King. The deal with AstraZeneca was signed in October. It is reported that till the domestic vaccine is under trial, Thailand will rely on imported vaccines.
Thailand’s COVID-19 update
Thailand has so far recorded 25,111 confirmed COVID-19 infections while 24,070 have recovered. Moreover, 83 Thai citizens lost their lives to the virus. The country also reported its first death of a doctor due to COVID-19 which he contracted from his patient.