Joint trials of Sputnik V and AstraZeneca will begin shortly, says Russian expert

Joint trials of Sputnik V and AstraZeneca will begin shortly, says Russian expert

The Gamaleya Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology will begin joint trials of COVID-19 vaccines with the Oxford University and the UK-Swedish company AstraZeneca shortly, head of the Gamaleya Research Center Alexander Ginzburg said on Thursday, TASS reports.

"Our English colleagues and AstraZeneca only have one component, they do not have an efficient boosting component. As our colleagues have shown, if the first component is used a second time, there is an improvement [in immunity], but an insignificant one, so the Russian Direct Investment Fund and AstraZeneca have agreed that clinical trials can be held which would use the component developed at Oxford as the first shot and the component forming part of the Sputnik V vaccine as the second one," Ginzburg said in an interview with Rossiya-24 channel.

"As far as I understand, these clinical trials will begin shortly, and then our foreign colleagues will have a very effective vaccine that can be considered a result of joint efforts," he added.

Ginzburg explained that the second component of the vaccine is important because it boosts the effect of the first component and impacts creation of memory cells. "We created two components of the vaccine [Sputnik V] at once, the second component boosts the effect of the first one, and not only does it boost it, it gives an additional possibility to hope for the creation of memory cells that will protect us for a long time as a result of repeat vaccination," he noted.

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