A team of Israeli researchers at The Galilee Research Institute (MIGAL) says they could have a coronavirus vaccine ready for human trials by June 1, according to a report by The Jerusalem Post.
It will become available in Israel first, when it is produced for the market.
Dr. Chen Katz, group leader of the MIGAL’s biotechnology group, told the newspaper Thursday, “We are in the final stages and within a few days we will hold the proteins – the active component of the vaccine.”
The group has already developed an effective vaccine against IBV, the avian Coronavirus Infectious Bronchitis Virus. It was during their pre-clinical trials at the Veterinary Institute on the IBV vaccine that the group discovered the genetic similarity of the IBV coronavirus to the human COVID-19 coronavirus, which researchers said uses the same infection mechanism.
Because the vaccine in development will be oral, “the quality of this kind of vaccine should be closer to food regulations than pharma regulations or somewhere in between,” Katz said “We hope that we will not need to go through the complete purification process like in the drug industry, because that could delay us.”
Trials have also been started on mice to support the previous trials on chickens.
Phase 1 clinical trials on humans are to be conducted on “young, healthy individuals.” Those will likely be expanded to the general population.
The research is being funded in part by NIS 30 million grant from the Science and Technology Ministry.