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20 Sep, 2020 08:48

More than 60,000 volunteer for final trial of pioneering 'Sputnik V' Covid-19 vaccine, 100s get jab and 'feel well' – Moscow mayor

More than 60,000 volunteer for final trial of pioneering 'Sputnik V' Covid-19 vaccine, 100s get jab and 'feel well' – Moscow mayor

Tens of thousands of people have volunteered to take part in trials of Russia's pioneering Covid-19 vaccine, known as 'Sputnik V,' the mayor of Moscow has revealed. Hundreds have already been immunized with the formula.

Large-scale final trials of the vaccine, the first in the world to be officially registered, are underway in the Russian capital, Mayor Sergey Sobyanin told the Rossiya-1 TV channel on Sunday.

"More than 60,000 people have volunteered [and] several thousand people have undergone relevant medical checks" prior to taking part in the trials, said Sobyanin. More than 700 have received the Sputnik V shot and "all of them are feeling well," he added.

There have been a total of 276,000 Covid-19 cases in Moscow, accounting for roughly a quarter of Russia's 1.1 million known infections.

Russian Health Minister Mikhail Murashko had previously reported that volunteers had shown no unexpected adverse effects so far. "Approximately 14 percent have minor complaints of weakness, muscle pain for 24 hours, and an occasional increase in body temperature," he told the media last week.

The symptoms are "described in the instructions and are predictable," the minister said, explaining that they "level off" by the next day.

The vaccine was developed by Moscow's renowned Gamaleya Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology earlier this year. President Vladimir Putin announced on August 11 that it had been officially registered. Health officials have signaled that Sputnik V will be available for a mass nationwide vaccination campaign by early next year.

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