BELLAIRE, Texas – A Bellaire research firm is in the race to find a COVID-19 vaccine after being selected to conduct clinical trials. Researchers say it’s now up to the public to sign up for the clinical trials so they can get a vaccine on the shelf.
The Texas Center for Drug Development (TCDD) is asking for volunteers to come forward after the firm was selected for the COVID-19 vaccine trail. The program is a joint effort between TCDD and DM Clinical Research, which are two of the largest non-institutional clinical research networks in the Greater Houston area, according to a press release.
Collaborators on this program include preeminent U.S. pharmaceutical companies and the NIH as part of Operation Warp Speed —which aims to deliver 300 million doses of a safe, effective vaccine for COVID-19 to Americans by January 2021.
“It’s good that these have already gone through Phase 1 trials and they’ve been shown to be safe in those trials and they’ve had some efficacy data showing that it looks like these are working quite well,” said Dr. Vicki Miller, of TCDD.
The experimental vaccines were approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for phase 2 and 3 trials. The vaccine must be tested on people in order for it to get potential final approval.
“We are looking for any risk level, although we do need more high-risk people such as healthcare providers, firefighters, any essential workers,” Miller said of the trials.
Thousands of volunteers are needed in the next few weeks for the clinical study, which Miller said could last a year or two depending on the trial.
Volunteers will not be injected with COVID-19 during the trials, per the doctors, but their medical and medical histories will be checked. Volunteers will also be compensated for their travel and time.