The Nigerian government on Friday said it has received samples of Russia’s COVID-19 vaccine.
Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire received the samples from the Russia Ambassador to Nigeria, Alexey Shebarshin, during a visit to the ministry in Abuja, on Friday.
The ministry’s Director of Information, Media, and Public Relations, Olujimi Oyetomi disclosed this in a statement.
“Russian Federation Ambassador to Nigeria, H.E. Alexey L. Shebarshin on courtesy visit to Nigeria’s Health Ministers, Russian-made COVID-19 Vaccine finally here,” the statement said.
Bluebloodz.com has learned that the – Russia’s “Sputnik-V” Covid-19 vaccine produced an antibody response in all participants in early-stage trials, according to results published on Friday by The Lancet medical journal that were hailed by Moscow.
The results of the two trials, conducted in June-July this year and involving a total of 76 participants, showed 100 per cent of participants developing antibodies to the new coronavirus and no serious side-effects, The Lancet said.
Russia licensed the two-shot jab for domestic use in August, the first country to do so and before any data had been published or a large-scale trial on the vaccine begun.
“The two 42-day trials – including 38 healthy adults each – did not find any serious adverse effects among participants, and confirmed that the vaccine candidates elicit an antibody response,” The Lancet said.
“Large, long-term trials including a placebo comparison, and further monitoring are needed to establish the long-term safety and effectiveness of the vaccine for preventing Covid-19 infection,” it said.
Some western experts have warned against the vaccine’s use until all internationally approved testing and regulatory steps have been taken.
The first doses of a vaccine against Covid-19 will probably start becoming available in countries in the second or third quarter of next year, World Health Organisation chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said at a briefing in Geneva on Friday. Countries initially won’t have enough for everyone and will need to prioritise them for high-risk populations.