Israel launches expanded Phase II trial of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate

The next five volunteers are expected to receive their first doses later this week.

President Reuven Rivlin is seen alongside the first person to receive a dose of the Israel-made coronavirus vaccine as part of the Phase II trials at Ashkelon's Barzilai Medical Center. (photo credit: AMOS BEN-GERSHOM/GPO)
President Reuven Rivlin is seen alongside the first person to receive a dose of the Israel-made coronavirus vaccine as part of the Phase II trials at Ashkelon's Barzilai Medical Center.
(photo credit: AMOS BEN-GERSHOM/GPO)
The first person to receive a dose of Israel’s novel coronavirus vaccine as part of the country’s expanded Phase II trial was inoculated on Tuesday at Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon in the presence of President Reuven Rivlin.
Volunteers had already been inoculated last week at Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer and Hadassah-University Medical Center, where the Phase I trial took place.

The volunteer was only identified as Elad. The next five volunteers are expected to receive their first doses later this week.
Israel’s vaccine candidate, Brilife, was developed by the Israel Institute of Biological Research. The Phase I trial of the vaccine was completed in late November 2020. Some 80 volunteers between the ages of 18 and 55 were inoculated at Hadassah-University Medical Center in Jerusalem and Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer. No significant side effects were reported.
Some 350 potential volunteers have registered for Phase II of the trial, the President’s Residence said in a press release.
The Phase II trial will ultimately include 1,000 healthy volunteers aged 18 and over, including senior citizens. The aim of this phase is to complete vaccine safety precautions, determine effective dosages and further determine the vaccine’s effectiveness.
Volunteers are expected to be inoculated at hospitals across the country.
If the Phase II trial is successful, it will enable the launch of a large-scale Phase III trial to test the effectiveness of the vaccine with the participation of up to 30,000 volunteers in Israel and abroad. Phase III is the final phase required to achieve approval for vaccination.


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