With the spread of the new type of coronavirus (Covid-19) epidemic to the world, studies for developing vaccines or drugs that will cure the disease have started.
Emphasizing that some of the vaccination studies are clinical trials for the treatment of the virus and some are for strengthening the immune system, Director of the Institute of Health Sciences of Istinye University, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Pharmacy. Dr. Semra Şardaş said, “The treatments currently being implemented are being continued with existing medicines. Even if scientists can complete new drug and vaccine research by the end of 2020, it will be difficult to demonstrate their effectiveness and have mass production. As new vaccination techniques are used, there is no guarantee that everything will go smoothly. The information obtained with the slightest error, ineffectiveness and security problem may lose its reliability and value. ”
DRUG DEVELOPMENT WORKS REQUIRE DIFFERENT STAGES
She warned that the start of clinical trials does not mean 'vaccine could be developed in a short time'. Professor Dr. Semra Şardaş stated, “The safety / efficacy of the drug candidate molecule is determined primarily by animal experiments and the toxic dose is determined and the dose to be administered to the human is calculated. However, we have very painful experiences that even information from a single animal species cannot be directly applied to human beings. Therefore, these studies carried out in various animal species are designed for a long period of time to cover the breeding time of the animal. Following this, the drug candidate is subjected to clinical studies called "Pharmaceutical Clinical Research". Ethical principles are carried out in accordance with the rules stipulated by the health authorities within the framework of the Helsinki Declaration.
3-STAGE CLINICAL TRIAL
Professor Dr Şardaş stated that the clinical trials are carried out in three stages, Stating whether the vaccine is safe and possible side effects are investigated on 10 to 20 healthy volunteers in the first phase. In the second stage, in areas where the epidemic is effective in phase 2, vaccines are tested on 100 infected people. Then, in phase 3 and in the final stage, the same process is tested again on several thousand volunteers. This process can take months. Drug studies are continuing to develop drugs to treat existing cases, with the exception of vaccine studies that aim to prevent the epidemic by making people immune to coronavirus. While the outbreak continues to spread worldwide; A drug or vaccine has yet to be found that provides complete immunity to the main virus or that can cure the disease. However, many countries are working on this issue rapidly.
COUNTRIES CONTINUING THE CORONAVIRUS researches
Professor Dr. Semra Şardaş gave the following information about the countries where the vaccination studies were conducted:
“China has announced that the vaccine developed for coronavirus has received approval for clinical trials and will begin trials in late April.
In France, the 'Plaquenil' drug used to combat malaria, has been very promising in almost 300 thousand patients who have had a coronavirus. she stated that Plaquenil, which has been used in rheumatism and joint pain in recent years, may be good for coronavirus, and reported that the virus disappeared in 75% of the 24 patients with coronavirus infection 6 days after taking Plaquenil.
“Australia has two drugs produced for different diseases; It is reported that the combination of active substances in the drug used in the treatment of malaria and HIV inactivates coronavirus in laboratory tubes.
“Israel will announce that the Biological Research Institute is developing a coronavirus vaccine. Israeli media reported that the Institute for Biological Research in the country will announce that it has recently developed a coronavirus vaccine. However, for the safe use of the vaccine, it has been stated that months of tests and experiments should be carried out.
“The University of Gent Biotechnology Center (VIB) in Belgium announced that it has neutralized coronavirus in a laboratory setting. The center reported that this was an important step toward the treatment of coronavirus and continues working to develop drugs. Canadian-based company Medicago, backed by the U.S. Department of Defense Pentagon, said the coronavirus vaccine they developed will be available in November.
“The American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced that they can start producing the vaccine if they get their approval.
“India announced that the coronavirus study with anti-viral cocktails worked. She reports that treatment with swine flu, malaria and HIV anti-viral drugs has been successful. Dutch scientists announced that they managed to develop special antibodies against coronavirus, studies are continuing.
“A biotechnology firm located in San Diego, USA, has announced that it collaborates with experts from the “National Singapore Duke University” to develop a vaccine and the results are promising.
"The German biotechnology company CureVac is also working extensively on coronavirus, and the company, which received 80m euros from the European Union, has announced that it can develop vaccines for coronavirus until autumn."