Challenge Trials in Britain!

From the FT:

London is to host the world’s first Covid-19 human challenge trials — in which healthy volunteers are deliberately infected with coronavirus to assess the effectiveness of experimental vaccines. The UK government-funded studies are expected to begin in January at a secure quarantine facility in east London, according to several people involved in the project, which will be announced next week.

…The project’s academic leader is Imperial College London, and it will be run by hVivo, a spinout from Queen Mary University of London that was bought earlier this year by Open Orphan, a Dublin-based pharmaceutical research organisation.

…The petition organiser of 1Day Sooner in the UK is 18-year-old Alastair Fraser-Urquhart who is devoting his time to the campaign before going to University College London to study cancer biology next year.

All hail Alastair Fraser-Urquhart!

This part enraged me:

The NIH is also investigating the technical and ethical requirements for challenge trials. But Nadine Rouphael, a leading vaccine researcher at Emory University in Atlanta and one of several scientists who are keen to carry out challenge studies in the US, said: “There is no urgency at NIH. The UK is well ahead — and that’s great.”

No urgency!!! I raised challenge trials with the administration in April.

Addendum: Previous MR posts on challenge trials. And here is the UK petition and the Canadian petition from 1daysooner.


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