The University of WITS has launched a second COVID-19 vaccine trial in South Africa by US-based biotech company Novavax.

The clinical trial starts on the heels of another vaccine trial which started in June and is led by Professor of Vaccinology Shabir Madhi.

Current studies show that the Novavax vaccine administered on non-human primates has shown protection against SARS-Cov-2 infection in the nasal passages and lung disease.

Madhi says the trial will help the country generate evidence on how well these vaccines work in an African context.

Participants are currently being screened for the second COVID-19 vaccine trial that’s aimed at evaluating a particle in the vaccine that protects adults between 18 and 64 years old against the coronavirus.

The nano-particle S-protein is produced by Novavax.

Madhi says, “We started our first vaccine study about 6 weeks ago and we have had an overwhelming response of people coming forward, volunteering and wanting to be part of the study. So fortunately we don’t have any shortage of volunteers.”

Two thousand nine hundred volunteers will participate in the trial and Madhi says they will be tracked closely to find out if the vaccine protects against COVID-19 or not.

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