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Brazil OK’s clinical tests for homegrown COVID vaccine Butanvac

A general view of the Brazilian health regulator Anvisa headquarters in Brasilia

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazil’s health regulator Anvisa on Wednesday authorized Phase 1 and 2 clinical tests to be carried out on volunteers for the Butanvac vaccine developed by Sao Paulo’s Butantan Institute biomedical center.

The tests for the two-shot vaccine were initially authorized for 400 volunteers, but will later involve an expected total of 6,000 volunteers aged 18 and over, Anvisa said.

The vaccine developed by Butantan, one of Brazil’s two top biomedical research centers, will not need imported active ingredients like the main vaccines produced in Brazil, the AstraZeneca shot and Sinovac Biotech’s CoronaVac.

Sao Paulo state governor João Doria, celebrating the Anvisa authorization on Twitter, said Butantan has 7 million doses of Butanvac ready.

(Reporting by Anthony Boadle; editing by Richard Pullin)

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