You've heard of plant-based food but have you ever heard of a plant-based vaccine before? Well, now you have. A COVID-19 vaccine Canada is working on is actually derived from plants and a Quebec company has already begun doing human trials for it. Millions of doses could be ready by the end of 2021.
Medicago, a Quebec City-based biopharmaceutical company, started phase one of clinical trials for a COVID-19 vaccine on July 13.
The first doses of it were given to healthy volunteers then.
This clinical trial is a randomized and partially blinded study of 180 people, both male and female between the ages of 18 and 55.
Three doses of the plant-derived vaccine will be evaluated.
Safety and immunogenicity results from this study should be ready in October and after that, Medicago plans to move onto the second and third phases of trials.
"Creating a sufficient supply of COVID-19 vaccines within the next year is a challenge which will require multiple approaches, with different technologies," said Dr. Bruce Clark, president and CEO of Medicago, in a news release.
So, the company believes that the plant-based aspect of this will help diversify the growing number of vaccines that are being developed for this virus.
Medicago is planning to be able to manufacture about 100 million doses of this vaccine by the end of 2021.
The biopharmaceutical company's large scale facility in Quebec City will be finished in 2023.
After that, it could be possible for up to one billion doses to be produced every single year.
This isn't the only vaccine for COVID-19 that Canada is working on.
Health Canada had approved clinical trials to take place at the Canadian Centre for Vaccinology at Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia.
However, China hasn't approved for the vaccine to be sent to Canada so nothing has started yet according to CTV News.
Researchers in Saskatchewan are hoping to begin human trials in the fall for one they've been working on.
Canada has ordered 37 million syringes and is working on getting other supplies that will be needed for widespread vaccinations once a vaccine is ready.
That's almost one needle per person in the country.