The Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University Hospital (BSMMU) is negotiating the terms and conditions of human trial for a Covid-19 vaccine with French multinational pharmaceutical company Sanofi.
Confirming the matter, BSMMU Vice-Chancellor Professor Kanak Kanti Barua told The Business Standardsaid, "Discussions are underway with Sanofi, and we will make an agreement with them after the process is complete."
"The BSMMU has already applied to the Bangladesh Medical Research Council (BMRC) for permission to carry out the vaccine trial," he added.
BMRC's Director Dr Mahmood-Uz-Zahan, however, declined to make any comments on the matter.
According to BSMMU sources, 500 volunteers will participate in the proposed human trial.
According to the World Health Organisation's draft list of vaccine candidates, Sanofi is developing two Covid-19 vaccines – one is currently in the clinical trial stage, and the other is in pre-clinical stage. Sanofi is now conducting their phase-1 and phase-2 clinical trials in the USA.
The Bangladesh government on 27 August gave approval to the Chinese biopharmaceutical company Sinovac for a human trial of their Covid-19 vaccine.
The International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b) was supposed to conduct the human trial on 4,200 healthcare workers at seven dedicated Covid-19 hospitals in Dhaka.
But the initiative was put on hold after the company demanded co-funding from the Bangladesh government for the human trial.