Locally-made intranasal vaccine ‘on the way’
Turkish scientists working with nanotechnology firm Nanografi are developing the country’s first intranasal COVID-19 vaccine, the industry and technology minister said on March 20.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of Nanografi’s new graphene production plant in the capital Ankara, Mustafa Varank said the nasal spray was expected to be more effective.
The phase-1 human trials will begin shortly for the first Turkish-made intranasal vaccine candidate as its preclinical stages have successfully been completed, he said.
“After all clinical stages are successfully completed, we aim to launch administering intranasal vaccine this year,” Varank stressed.
Pointing out the obstacles to commercial graphene adoption, Varank said Turkey would be one of the top 10 countries that can produce graphene at a large scale thanks to the new investment.
It is predicted that nasal sprays, which the Health Minister Fahrettin Koca announced that its clinical studies would begin in Turkey, will be used by all age groups to prevent contamination.
Meanwhile, Turkey plans to offer its domestic vaccine to all humanity under the most appropriate conditions when the work on the vaccine completes, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said.
The vaccine issue has taken a dire turn; nearly 100 countries have no access to the COVID-19 vaccine yet, Erdoğan said in a video message.
While there are countries that have vaccinated almost all their citizens, billions of people are not able to access even the first dose of the vaccine, he stressed.
Countries reaching the required number of doses to vaccinate their citizens should deliver their excess stock of vaccines to countries in need, Erdoğan underlined.
On the country’s successful vaccination campaign, Erdoğan pointed to a drop in the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in older people after over 10 million coronavirus jabs that have been administered.
In Turkey, more than 8.8 million people have received their first doses, while over 6.8 million have completed a two-dose course.