Johnson & Johnson expects human trial of its Covid-19 vaccine by September

A worker sprays disinfectant inside a church during a nationwide lockdown, impose in the wake of coronavirus pandemic, in Kanyakumari
Global healthcare major Johnson & Johnson (J&J) on Monday said it expects to start human testing of its COVID-19 vaccine by September 2020 and anticipates that the first batch of vaccine could be available for emergency use authorisation in early 2021.

Through a partnership, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) and Johnson & Johnson together have committed more than $1 billion of investment to co-fund vaccine research, development, and clinical testing, Johnson & Johnson said in a statement.

J&J's lead vaccine candidate will enter a phase one human clinical study by September, the company said, and clinical data on its effects is expected before the end of the year. If the vaccine works well, the company said it could be available for emergency use in early 2021.

As part of its commitment, Johnson & Johnson is also expanding the company's global manufacturing capacity, including through the establishment of new US vaccine manufacturing capabilities and scaling up capacity in other countries, it added.

The additional capacity will assist in the rapid production of a vaccine and will enable the supply of more than one billion doses of a safe and effective vaccine globally, the company said.

"The world is facing an urgent public health crisis and we are committed to doing our part to make a COVID-19 vaccine available and affordable globally as quickly as possible," Johnson & Johnson Chairman and CEO Alex Gorsky said.

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