China approves inhalable Covid vaccine, a first


Chinese authorities have approved an inhalable Covid vaccine, a world first that boosted the stock price of the manufacturer, based in Tianjin (north), on Monday.

CanSino Biologics’ vaccine, which will be usable as an emergency booster dose, has received the green light from the National Medical Products Administration, the company said in a statement sent to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on Sunday.

After this announcement, its share price jumped 14% on Monday morning before closing up 7.1%.

Without the need to be injected and easier to store, the vaccine will be administered nasally, via a sprayer.

“The approval will have a positive impact on business performance if the vaccine is subsequently purchased and used by relevant government agencies,” the statement said.

CanSino did not say when this adenovirus vaccine, which a July 2021 study published in The Lancet noted elicits a “strong antibody response” as a booster dose, would be available to the general public.

Scientists from several countries around the world, including Cuba, Canada and the United States, are working on vaccines that can be administered through the nose, a route of entry for the coronavirus.

Since 2020, China has approved eight locally developed Covid vaccines, but has not yet authorized the use of foreign Covid vaccines on its soil.

Despite a much lower number of contaminations than the rest of the world, the country continues to follow a strict so-called “zero Covid” health strategy.

This policy translates into confinements as soon as positive cases appear, almost compulsory PCR tests every 72, 48 or even 24 hours, quarantine placements but also the closure of factories and businesses.

The metropolis of Shenzhen (south), temple of high-tech and which has 18 million inhabitants, saw this weekend many districts placed in confinement.

At the other end of the country, the inhabitants of Chengdu, in the province of Sichuan (southwest), are also forced to stay at home and will be tested massively between Monday and Wednesday.

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