First clinical trial for potential COVID-19 vaccine in Canada approved: Trudeau

Vaccine development and testing could take years, according to the World Health Organization

Health Canada has approved the first clinic trial of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Saturday (May 16).

The efforts are being led by the Canadian Centre for Vaccinology at Dalhousie University alongside the National Research Council of Canada.

If the trial is to be successful, Trudeau told reporters from outside his home at Rideau Cottage that “we can produce and distribute it here at home.”

Trudeau noted that research and development of a vaccine takes time but called the news “encouraging.”

The purpose of a vaccine is to give the body’s immune system a portion of the virus so it can produce antibodies exactly like it would if exposed to the disease. The World Health Organization and others have warned that a vaccine for the novel coronavirus could take years to create.

ALSO READ: Gaining herd immunity through COVID-19 transmissions ‘ineffective’

In the meantime, COVID-19 has done its share of damage in Canada in recent months, forcing thousands out of work, sparking bans and restrictions on public outings and a temporary closure of the country’s borders.

The federal government has provided $275 million in funding for vaccine and antiviral development and clinical trials globally, including $27 million across 47 teams of scientists researching the novel coronavirus.

Trudeau has said in the past that working to create a vaccine on home soil would ensure Canadians are the first to receive it.

READ MORE: Should a vaccine for COVID-19 be made mandatory in Canada, once it’s created?

“There are obviously going to be extremely important decisions around how to best get to that level of vaccination that will prevent further spread of COVID-19,” Trudeau said in late April, when asked whether government would pass legislation making a vaccine mandatory.

“There’s a lot of studies done on that over the past years in terms of what threshold of the population needs to vaccinated in order to prevent any spread of a disease and that research will obviously inform decisions we take around the COVID-19 vaccine when it comes.”


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

No active confirmed COVID-19 cases in Interior Health: BCCDC

Numbers from the BCCDC’s dashboard show 193 of the 195 COVID-19 cases in the region have recovered

Historic Hat Creek finds novel way to keep part of site open

VIP shopping experience offers people private visit to site’s gift shop

Mobile harm reduction service making weekly trips to Cache Creek

Service provides free kits, instruction, information, and referrals to those who need it

Ashcroft food bank benefits from donation as demand increases

Community Futures Thompson Country provides much-needed cash donation

VIDEO: B.C. dentist gets grand welcome home after two months in hospital fighting COVID-19

Michael Chow was given a surprise send off by hospital staff and ‘welcome home’ from neighbours

‘Like finding a needle in a haystack’: Ancient arrowhead discovered near Williams Lake

The artifact is believed to be from the Nesikip period between 7,500 BP to 6,000 BP

Indigenous families say their loved ones’ deaths in custody are part of pattern

Nora Martin joins other Indigenous families in calling for a significant shift in policing

Friends, family mourn Salt Spring Island woman killed in suspected murder-suicide

A GoFundMe campaign has been launched for Jennifer Quesnel’s three sons

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Indigenous chief alleges RCMP beat him during arrest that began over expired licence plate

Athabasca Chipewyan Chief Allan Adam calling for independent investigation

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

UPDATED: Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park arrested

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

Most Read