PUBLISHED: 06:39 EDT, 15 June 2020 | UPDATED: 06:47 EDT, 15 June 2020
- Imperial College London expect approval for human trials to come today
- The first 120 participants will be given the jab 48 hours later after health checks
- Professor Robin Shattock estimates all of Britain could be vaccinated for £200m
- The leading scientists have pledged to produce the jab at the lowest cost
The second coronavirus vaccine made in Britain is on track to start human trials as soon as Wednesday, and could cost just £3 per person if it’s proven to work.
Imperial College London scientists expect approval for the first phase of human trials – which will check if their vaccine is safe – to come through today.
The first 120 participants will be given the jab about 48 hours later after scientists have checked they haven’t already had the coronavirus.
Professor Robin Shattock, who has been in charge of developing the jab candidate, said the team want to make it as cheap as possible so the entire British population could be vaccinated for the ‘really good value’ of just under £200million.
The Imperial project already has enough money to produce enough of the vaccine for the entire NHS and all social care workers.
If the trial starting this week is successful a second one, involving 6,000 people, will come later. But Professor Shattock said the vaccine won’t be available until at least 2021 even if everything goes according to plan.
The first UK-made vaccine to go into clinical trials was developed by Oxford University, and the Government hopes it will be ready by September.
Professor Robin Shattock (pictured), who is heading up trials of the potential jab, estimates the British population could be covered for a ‘really good value’ of about £200million
Speaking to The Times, Professor Shattock said: ‘We already have money from the government to make five million doses — that would cover 2.5million people.
‘That is enough for the entire health service and for care home workers.
‘But we also have the capacity, should we be called upon, to make enough vaccine for all the adult population in the UK.’
He estimated the vaccine would be ‘roughly £3 for each person to be immune, assuming it works. That’s really good value.’