BEIS announces world’s first coronavirus (COVID–19) human challenge study

BEIS announces world’s first coronavirus (COVID–19) human challenge study

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has announced that the UK will be the first country in the world to undergo a coronavirus (COVID–19) human challenge study. After receiving approval form the UK’s clinical trial ethics body, the study is set to begin within a month. The study is to involve up to 90 attentively selected, healthy adults aged between 18 to 30 years of age who will be exposed to coronavirus ‘in a safe and controlled environment to increase the understanding of how the virus affects people’. The government will invest £33.6m in support of the study, which also aims to provide doctors with a better understanding of how the immune system responds to coronavirus and ‘help support the pandemic response by aiding vaccine and treatment development’.

The Royal Free NHS Foundation Trust’s specialists and clinical research facilities in London are specially designed to control the virus, with highly trained scientists and medics on board to examine the virus in the body and to look after the volunteer patients 24 hours a day.

The virus is also being utilised in the characterisation study, which is produced by a team at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust in London.

Business Secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, said: ‘Researchers and scientists around the world have made incredible progress in understanding Covid-19 and developing critical vaccines to protect people’.

BEIS states that people can express an interest to take part in the research here.

Source: World's first coronavirus Human Challenge study receives ethics approval in the UK

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