China approves world’s first inhaled COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use
China has become the first country to approve an inhaled COVID-19 vaccine, paving the way for potential use of the needle-free product in the country.
CanSino Biologics said in a statement that China’s medicines regulatory board had approved the inhaled dose for emergency use as a booster vaccine. The product is known as Convidecia Air, and it delivers a vaccine dose through a puff of air from a nebuliser that is then inhaled by mouth.
CanSino’s injected vaccine is already in use in China, and has been approved in a handful of other countries.
According to a database maintained by WHO, CanSino’s product is one of two specifically ‘inhaled’ vaccines that had reached clinical phase development, as a number of companies worldwide consider innovative ways to deliver COVID-19 protection via the nose and mouth.
Over 70 Chinese cities have now been placed under full or partial COVID-19 lockdown since late August, which has impacted over 300 million people. A low vaccination rate among the elderly is a medical reaon used by Chinese authorities to justify the ongoing disease control measures.
CanSino’s Convidecia vaccine is similar to the J&J and Oxford AstraZeneca vaccines. It uses a harmless virus, called an adenovirus, to ferry instructions for making COVID-19’s spike proteins into cells so the body can create antibodies against them.
None of CanSino’s products have currently been authorised for use in the US, but WHO listed the injected version of Convidecia for emergency use earlier this year.
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