Amid so many controversies related to its development, the Russian vaccine for covid-19, called Sputnik V, will start to be distributed next week. There will be 40,000 volunteers from 45 medical centers across Russia for distribution in a clinical study before the immunization of the entire population.
Approved and announced by President Vladimir Putin, Sputnik V is the world’s first general purpose vaccine. This part of the program consists of a “randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial” and is the final preparation for national vaccination campaigns.
Putin was confident about the vaccine’s efficiency. According to him, the daughter herself received one of the two doses. “I know that it [the vaccine] has demonstrated efficiency and builds solid immunity,” he revealed in the international ad, saying that the drug has undergone all necessary tests.
The scientific community – including international institutions, such as the World Health Organization (WHO) – was suspicious about the efficiency of immunization. To date, Sputnik V has been tested on only 76 people in two small clinical experiments. The date of this study is not recorded in any scientific journal, nor was it made available to the public.
All the skepticism about the immunization developed by Russia goes beyond the lack of transparency. There is no documentation on the completion of the third stage of testing the vaccine, which indicates that this action may not have been properly completed.
In the race for product discovery, in a table updated by Flourish, Oxford University, Sinovac Biotech, Wuhan Institute of Biological Products, Beijing Institute of Biological Products, Moderna and BioNTech were the only ones to complete phase 3 and move towards approval .