Report: Hundred Israelis to Receive Experimental COVID-19 Vaccine

IIBR Director General Professor Shmuel Shapira gives Defense Minister Benny Gantz a vial of the vaccine, in July. (Defense Ministry)

The first trial of the Israel Institute for Biological Research (IIBR) coronavirus vaccine will be held next month at Sheba and Hadassah Hospitals, Yediot Acharonot reported Thursday.

The report said that about a hundred volunteers, whose recruitment will begin in coming days, will participate in the experiment and receive the vaccine. In the first phase, the safety of the vaccine will be tested, and if it is proven to have no significant side effects, trials will be expanded to hundreds more volunteers.

The vaccine is based on an active virus that is considered harmless to humans, engineered so that its shell will contain the protein of the coronavirus. The injection of the engineered virus into the body is supposed to teach the immune system how to produce antibodies to the virus.

It is estimated that trials will begin at both hospitals after Sukkos. The experiment will last for several weeks, and if it is successful – meaning that no significant side effects are found in those who receive it – it will be extended to hundreds of participants, then its effectiveness will also be tested.