Dr. Adham Baba, health minister, has given an update on the local messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) vaccine being developed by the Institute for Medical Research (IMR) and Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM). The vaccine has been in development since November and is apparently now in the cloning stage which includes the original strain and various variants of SARS-CoV-2.
The health minister said that after this stage, they will move on to clinical trials on animals, and then onto human subjects to test the vaccine’s efficacy. “Efficacy studies, the pre-clinical studies, which are for large and small animals, and then phases 1 to 3 of human trials must be conducted before the registration process for the vaccine,” he said at the weekly COVID-19 Immunisation Task Force (CITF) press conference.
Last week, Baba announced that IMR was developing two types of local vaccines, one mRNA and another inactivated vaccine. He stated that the vaccines will be used to accelerate the immunisation programme and help the country achieve its goal of herd immunity by year-end.