Coronavirus cure latest: Europe begins clinical trials on vaccine

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Coronavirus cure latest: Europe begins clinical trials on vaccine 1

Europe has now been deemed the epicentre of the outbreak of coronavirus by the World Health Organization (WHO), with Italy suffering more deaths than even China, where the disease was first detected. More than 100,000 cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in Italy, Spain and Germany alone, with the virus spreading rapidly throughout the continent.

Researchers in Europe have now begun clinical trials on a vaccine for the virus, involving more than 3,200 individuals.

Research body Inserm announced the trial, called Discovery, which is being led by Florence Ader, infectiologist in the Infectious and Tropical Diseases Department of the Croix-Rousse Hospital of Lyon University Hospital and researcher at the CIRI International Research Centre in Infectiology.

The trial hopes to examine the efficiency and safety of four experimental therapeutic strategies which experts have deemed to be potentially effective against COVID-19.

Dr Ader said: “We analysed data from the scientific literature on SARS and MERS coronaviruses and the first publications on SARS-COV2 from China in order to come up with a list of antiviral molecules to be tested: remdesivir, lopinavir and ritonavir in combination, the latter being administered with or without interferon beta and hydroxychloroquine.

“The list of these potential drugs is also based on the subset of experimental treatments classified as top priorities by the World Health Organization (WHO).

“The great strength of this trial is its ‘adaptive’ nature. This means that ineffective experimental treatments can very quickly be dropped and replaced by other molecules that emerge from research efforts.

“We will therefore be able to make changes in real time, in line with the most recent scientific data, in order to find the best treatment for our patients.”

The trial will include 3,200 people who have suffered from the virus in Belgium, France, Germany Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.


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