Rare Nerve Syndrome Attacks a Volunteer, Peru Stops Chinese Vaccine Clinical Trial

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The Peruvian government temporarily suspended phase III clinical trials of the COVID-19 vaccine made by Chinese company Sinopharm after a volunteer experienced neurological problems.

The Peruvian National Institute of Health decided on Friday (11/12/2020) to interrupt the clinical trial because one of the volunteers had difficulty moving his hand.

“A few days ago we gave a signal, as our duty should be, to the authorities that one of the clinical trial participants was displaying neurological symptoms, which could be related to Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS),” a lead researcher, German Malaga, said as quoted from the website. CNA.

Guillain-Barre syndrome is a rare, non-communicable disease that affects the movement of the hands and feet. In June last year, Peru had implemented a temporary health condition related to the discovery of several cases related to the syndrome.

In 1970, the vaccination program in the United States against the swine flu virus was also temporarily suspended because 450 of the people who were vaccinated had the syndrome, which could cause paralysis.

Sinopharm vaccine clinical trials involving 12 thousand people should be completed this week with results will be known in the middle of next year.

If proven successful, the Peruvian government will purchase 20 million doses of Sinopharm to vaccinate up to two-thirds of their population.

Currently about 60 thousand people have been injected with the Sinopharm vaccine in clinical trials conducted in Argentina, Russia and Saudi Arabia.

Peru itself is the country with the highest COVID-19 death rate per thousand of population in the world, with a total of 36,499 deaths while the number of infected people exceeds 979 thousand.