In an effort to find a vaccine for the treatment of the coronavirus (Covid-19), Indonesia is conducting a clinical trial of the vaccine.
Head of the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) Laksana Tri Handoko said LIPI was involved in clinical trials of vaccines in Indonesia. The clinical trial will be carried out with Kalbe Farma and South Korea.
Handoko said that Kalbe Farma and Genexine of South Korea are working together to clinical test the DNA vaccine for Covid-19. “We are involved in clinical trials phase 2 and 3 of the vaccine candidates that have been developed by various partners abroad,” said Handoko.
Furthermore, he said that South Korea’s Genexine is currently in the approval process for phase 1 clinical trials in Korea, phase 1 for just a few people. While phase 2 and 3 clinical trials will be conducted in Indonesia.
Meanwhile, PT Bio Farma and a biopharmaceutical company from China namely Sinovac are collaborating in clinical trials of vaccines for viruses that are weakened or killed.
At present Indonesia is independently making a recombinant protein-based vaccine. The Eijkman Institute of Molecular Biology is leading the development of the independent vaccine, and vaccine testing in animals will be carried out at the LIPI level 3 biosafety laboratory facility (BSL-3) in Cibinong, West Java.
Handoko said there were 135 vaccine candidates registered at the World Health Organization (WHO). But only 10 vaccine candidates have entered the clinical trial.
“There is no one who can guarantee which will succeed,” he said.
The need for the Covid-19 vaccine in Indonesia is quite large considering the large population of Indonesia. If vaccinating 100 million people in Indonesia, then for two shots of vaccine means 200 million ampoules are needed.
“If we wait to have to import from abroad, we cannot necessarily get it because all countries want to get it,” he said.
Head of the LIPI COVID-19 Handling Acceleration Task Force and Head of the LIPI Biotechnology Research Center Puspita Lisdiyanti said they would work with the University of Indonesia in engagement for clinical trials of the vaccine.
Lisdiyanti said that currently being explored the possibility of producing 500 liters of vaccine that would use facilities at the LIPI Science and Technology Utilization and Innovation Center.