CU in the News

Thailand hits vaccine accelerator as virus launches second surge

Thai researchers in the global race to develop coronavirus vaccines are now working on more than 10 prototypes using different technologies. The three frontrunners have passed the animal-testing phase and are now heading into human trials under their respective developers – CU Faculty of Medicine, CU Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Bionet Asia Co Ltd.

CU’s Faculty of Medicine has been granted more than Bt300 million by the National Vaccine Institute to develop the Chula-Cov19 mRNA vaccine. After successful tests on guinea pigs and monkeys, the prototype will advance to human trials in April.

Funded by Australia, Bionet Asia researchers expect their prototype to enter phase 1 and 2 of human trials early this year. It forecasts results from humans by late March.

A separate promising prototype is being developed by Baiya Phytopharm, a start-up run by the CU Enterprise Foundation and launched by two lecturers from Chula’s Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Hit by a lack of government funding, BaiyaPhytopharm launched a public campaign to raise Bt500 million on December 18 and expects its vaccine to be ready for general use by late 2021.

The sense of kinship and warmth found in the Chula community is priceless and a treasure worth keeping.

Prof. Dr. Pornanong Aramwit Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Chulalongkorn University